Seattle Storms and Automobile Adventures

Have I mentioned that Phil and I love adventure? We can't seem to get enough of it. In fact, we love it so much, we like doing things that will purposely cause some type of inconvenient situation, just so we can later get a thrill out of the triumph that comes from overcoming harry circumstances. If you are like us...here are some tips. Phil and I have tried each one of these out in the last month and they all work great! 1. Wait for that once-every-three-year Seattle ice storm to stay out late and ignore every snow storm warning because you grew up in Utah and you can handle snow. Yeah, so I'm laughing to myself as my co-workers start packing up at 3 p.m. to go home thinking "Oh come on! It is just a little snow, people!" In fact, I think they are all so silly, I decide to go to Fred Meyer and shop around for awhile (because Phil is at the Seahawks game and I've got time). To my credit, it was not snowing at this point. Just a flurry off and on. Well, I enjoy myself for about an hour and even in the checkout line the cashier lady says, "Can you believe this weather" and again I think to myself...actually I can and it's not that big of a deal. I proceed to push my cart out the door..... All I see is white. At least 3 inches on the ground. Enough snow, that I can barely push my cart to the car, which I had to do with my head down, arms straight like I was pushing a bolder up a hill. I get to my care thinking still! No problem, I've got 4-wheel drive. Which would have been nice if every exit out of the parking lot wasn't blocked by people who were stuck. I then quickly learned and took to heart Seattle snow storms are different from Utah snow storms for the following reasons: 1. People in Seattle don' t know what to do when it snows, lets alone drive in it. 2. There is probably one snow plow in the whole city. 3. There are a lot of trees here, which create two problems. Shade and hills. 4. The climate is just right enough that when it snows, it immediately turns into ice. I thankfully and prayerfully and humbly made it home that night to worry about Phil who was still at the Seahawks game forging a little adventure of his own... 2. Don't charge your cell phone. After my horendous experience that evening. I try to call Phil to come home early only to remember his phone was on its last leg and he would turn it off and save it to call me on his way home. I sat anxiously at home flipping back and forth between the news and the game calling him every five minutes still. While watching the news I discover more about the driving situation that is becoming worse by the second. People stranded on the side of the road who had been waiting for a tow truck since 3 o'clock. Others stuck on the freeway who just decide to start walking in the snow the rest of the way home. Air shots of the freeways packed so tight because no one could get off because so many cars blocking the exits with their stuck and abandoned cars. I finally get a hold of Phil as he is slowly realizing he is entering one of the worst driving situations of his life. He manages to get off the freeway to find himself lost. I am online trying to help him get his bearings. We get a sketchy plan just in case the phone goes dead: he is going to see how far he can get (seeing as we live on a steep hill and everything is freezing more by the second) and then he'll walk the rest of the way. About this time his phone goes dead and I'm left with the saddest images of Phil walking three miles in the snow. I turn on HGTV to numb my worries. I call my mom, I call his mom, anybody willing to listen! Then, to my utter excitment I see Phil calling. I answer and he gets about two sentances out before it goes dead again. Dispair. At this point I throw myself on the couch and start bawling. About a couple hours later Phil walked through the front door. Apparently, there were groups of incredibley nice people at the bottom of rough hills getting people unstuck the whole night. It was because of two of these groups Phil was able to get home, with our car, safe and sound that night. It's amazing what service and a kind heart can do. 3. Pick steep, windy, icy hills for an alternative route home. This is a good one. So after this ice/snow storm, Phil and I play it safe and stay home the next dayand carpool the day after that to work. We even left work early that night to avoid the roads after freezing. But like I say...that was being cautious. So we're pretty close to home but of course there is a lot of traffic, so Phil and I decide to take a "shortcut". We turned on this road both of us had no recollection of, but felt it would land us exactly where we wanted to be. Well, as we drive up the hill it just keeps getting more steep and more icy. Unlike most of the roads, this one remained unthawed. We're following a car to suddently stop at a bend in the road to later find we are part of a long line of basically stuck cars. If they weren't stuck they couldn't go anywhere because of the stuck ones. Well, I get out. Walk up the hill and scope out the scene. Not good. Well then some people up the hill decide it would be a good idea to turn around and go down the hill. No! That is not a good idea on an icy hill. We then proceeded to watch three cars slide down the hill, hit the bend in front of us do a three-sixty and get stuck. Awesome. The road was completely blocked, even if you could go up it. At this point Phil and I are blocked in. We then see one final car slide its way down to hit one of the stuck cars that of course jammed into us. Phil and I watched the whole thing in slowmo. Helpless. Just sitting there with our mouths open. At this point everyone behind us had gone back down the hill. So after getting the man's insurance Phil and I started slowly reversing. My job was to get out everytime someone started to go up the hill and flag them down to tell them to go back. This process was interesting. Many big SUV's were quite rude and blew right by...others were smart and listened. This almost crossed Phil and I's adventure threshold. 4. Lock your keys in your car. This one never fails!! I thought of it first. About five months ago I got to work and had to go pee really bad. Well, the second I shut my door I realized my keys were still in the car. Then, I realized my lights were still on. My dad tells me he now knows a total of two people who have done this...and the other one is my sister. Well, Phil comes and rescues me and jumps the car so I'm good to go. Thanks Phillip. Well, yesterday, Phil wanted to allow me some of the adventure so he gave it a whirl. However, instead of leaving his lights on, he chose to lock the keys in his car on the day Seattle is scheduled to have one of its worst rain/wind storms on record. After two hours of clutching the steering wheel while at one point my engine smoking, I got to Fremont (which is a gorgeous area bytheway, quaint and the same place they taped sleepless in seattle) and back. Now our power is out. For days we're told. This, however, we did not provoke in any way. In fact, with our past streak of adventures, we are trying really hard to do what my mom said, "Just try really hard this time to erh on the side of caution". Well, we're tryin mom! But you never know with us and our adventurous natures!!

1 comment:

  1. You're hilarious. I really think its because you lived in Utah forever. I could see myself doing the same thing. At least now you know that Seattle snow is not like Utah'a perfect and fluffy snow. Even though I could think of a few times when I thought that I was going to die while driving in a bad storm. It's best to not leave the house and just drink hot chocolate and peak out your window every now and then. That's my new defense, not snow tires

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