Tuesday, December 01, 2015

Inclemental weather

Yesterday, I was given a pleasant reminder that Winter has arrived here in Eugene. No, it wasn’t the weather app on my phone telling me it was snowing (even though it wasn’t snowing in my neck of the woods). It was my car sliding on an icy road. I couldn’t tell if the road was icy and I didn’t even think that it might be icy because I had just driven on that road an hour earlier and nothing went wrong. Well, that time around, something went wrong, and my car went flying.

Fortunately, my daughter and I were not hurt when the car bumped up against a sidewalk and stopped sliding (though I did wake up with some back pain at 2:30 in the morning), but it was enough to knock the steering in my car out of whack. It was so frightening, though, that I was no longer focused on getting my daughter to school on time. At that point, I just wanted to get her to school in one piece! I had to make safety our priority and slow down as I drove her the rest of the way to school. (I had to put safety first again after I dropped her off at school: I was planning to run a few errands but the steering in my car was off so I decided it was not safe to drive it around until it, and the wheel, was looked at first. It was pretty tense driving it home!)

Later that day, as I was watching the news (which I had also watched in the morning), I was surprised to see that there had been some crashes and car accidents here in Oregon due to cars sliding on icy roads. One accident was really bad: The front of the car was crushed in! Yikes! Another accident involved multiple vehicles. There is snow in some parts of Oregon but these accidents didn’t happen where there was snow, but plenty of ice! And even after city workers de-iced and poured sand on the streets, accidents were still happening!

It’s definitely that time of the year where we all need to be a little more careful when driving on the road. We gotta slow down and give each other enough space between cars for stopping at lights and stop signs. And even if it is not freezing cold outside or there is no visible ice anywhere, I have been advised that it's best to drive with the assumption that there is ice on the road.

Getting my kids to school on time is definitely important to me, but safety must ALWAYS come first. I tell the kids: “Safety first.” No matter what it takes or the cost, always put your own safety first. Even if it means they’ll be late for school or something. It’s like that quote in the movie Lucy: “I’d rather be late than dead.”

So. My kids might end up getting to school a little late during the winter. I’ll try to get them out the door earlier than usual, but there’s no way I’m gonna be speeding or rushing when I drive them to school. As it is, because of the damage to my car’s steering, I have to drive extra slower until it gets fixed.  I apologized to the kids about this. I told them there might be days that I won’t be able to get them to school on time because of bad driving conditions. (The schools do close if driving conditions get really bad but not if there’s a little ice on the roads.) But I also told them, you know, the school might understand. Heck, they might even expect some students to arrive late because of bad driving conditions. (To be honest, I really don’t like driving when there is snow and ice, but there’s not much I can do about it! Gotta get my kids to school, and all.)

And until my car is fixed, I can’t drive long distances, either. Which sucks, because I LOVE driving and I love driving long distances, too. (Lets me pretend for the duration of the trip that I’m traveling on the road. Ha!) So I had to cancel Jen’s violin lesson this week (it takes a half hour to drive out there) and I also had to reschedule Jesse’s doctor appointment that is later in the week. I am hoping my car will be fixed next week and I can go back to “jumping in and out of the car” to drive the kids to school and run errands or whatever.

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