The last time I went out on our road, which is more than two miles over the hill to the hard road, it looked like this:
We were on our way to pick up Mr. Pibb. Someone else was driving. I haven’t driven myself anywhere in a week and a half. It’s not just the driving on snow that scares me, but the hills and curves and steep dropoffs without guard rails. I have this massive terror of sliding off the road and careening down 100 feet. I grew up on flat land where it doesn’t snow. I learned how to drive in southern California. The last time I drove, it was to take Weston to the airport for a trip to family in Texas. This weekend, he flew back. And for the first time, I had to drive again. HAD TO. My child was going to be at the airport. By himself. That, or someone’s eyeball popping out of their head, would be about the only two things that would get me behind the wheel of a vehicle in this weather. Our road, going over the hill, was impassable this weekend after so much additional snow. That leaves the only other choice to be going across the river ford, which is a much closer access to a hard road.
I haven’t had my car parked up at the house in weeks. This is what our driveway looks like.
See? No cars at the house now. Just a tractor, which at this point isn’t going anywhere, either. (Though it has gone up and down a few times.)
It’s a long walk down the driveway, and an even longer walk back up.
Morgan came with me because she was STIR CRAZY by this time and wanted me to drop her off at a friend’s house on the way.
Going out the river ford still means you have to drive on the snow-covered road, but only for a couple hundred feet.
I was hoping the hard road across the river ford would be better. It usually gets snow plow attention, which our road does not. The only real scary part about getting to the river ford is this one narrow bit of the road where it’s close to a dropoff to the river, a deep spot which in the summer is the swimming hole.
I don’t think anyone has ever slid off the road into the river there but WHAT IF?!
I inched past that spot in my Explorer and finally arrived at the river ford. On the other side of the ford, you have to get up a short but somewhat steep bank to get to the road. I knew I’d need to take it fast or I’d get stuck. I hit it and crossed the ford just as a truck I hadn’t seen coming drove past. And I had to stop. And I got stuck. And started sliding. AND CRYING. Because I am TERRIFIED of driving in snow. I managed to stop sliding backward, but I knew I couldn’t get up the bank. There was no going forward! That would just be followed by MORE SLIDING BACKWARD. And possibly some more SCREAMING. And hysteria. Don’t forget the HYSTERIA. I told Morgan to go find Frank!!!!! Frank lives in the house across the river ford.
Frank’s son, Denny, lives in the house next door, which is an old converted one-room schoolhouse. It’s the old schoolhouse where my dad went to school and my grandmother taught.
Morgan came back with Frank AND Denny. Denny started giving me directions about how to get my Explorer up to the road. I said, NO, YOU DO IT!!! And cried some more then Denny got behind the wheel and got my car out of the river ford for me.
Only the hard road that was I hoping would be so much better than our road looked like this:
And Denny said, “Oh, you’ll be FINE!” He told me how he’d driven back and forth to town a half dozen times. I sniffled and said, sure, right, and went inching off down the road.
It’s seven miles to the two-lane main road where surely it would be cleared. But first I had to get there. Which seemed less likely with every inch.
A truck came barreling up behind us and I told Morgan, “These people are gonna LOVE me.” Because this is a narrow one-lane road. There was no place to pull over and I was going -10 miles per hour. The people behind us flashed their lights and waved their arms out the windows. The heavens opened and light beamed down. It was Frank and Denny! Riding to the rescue! I stopped the car. Denny jumped out and said, “I’ll drive your car for you.” And I could not scramble out of the driver’s seat fast enough. He drove my car all the way to the main road like he was on the Autobahn and it was nothing while Frank followed behind to take him back home.
Country neighbors are the best.
Weston brought a fiddle home with him, by the way. (Don’t tell him I told you that.) I’m fascinated that my child spent some of his Christmas money buying a fiddle from a pawn shop in Waco. Teenagers are so mysterious.
I called 52 from the interstate. “I CAN’T GET HOME!” I left my Explorer in a church parking lot near the main road where he met us and took us home.
It’s still there. I have no vehicle at the moment. At least I think it’s still there. Unless somebody stole it. From a church. Which would make them a very bad person.
But I don’t think I’m ever going anywhere again SO IT DOESN’T MATTER. I can’t drive in the snow.
And so now you have found (at least) one thing I can’t do.