My alarm went off at 7:00am this morning. I checked Facebook, and sure enough, there was an email saying our Habitat for Humanity project was delayed until 10:00. I assumed this would happen because it snowed a little last night, maybe an inch or two. I decided to take full advantage of the delay, and went straight back to sleep in my warm bed.
I heard my alarm once more at 9:00am. I rechecked Facebook and as there were no new updates, I got up and got ready to go paint. You may think I’m strange, but I really do enjoy painting. Heading outside, I noted that it didn’t feel terribly cold; it felt like the snow would melt by mid-day. I quickly brushed off the inconsequential accumulation of snow on my car and drove off towards I-40. The roads were completely clear, just a little wet. The snow that had fallen was confined to the yards and foliage. I chuckled to myself as I thought about what it takes in northern Illinois for anything to get delayed or canceled. However, I figured, the roads could have been snow-covered until just recently, when it could have started melting off the roads. And I wouldn’t want any of my friends out on the roads if they were icy.
Most of my 25-minute drive was on the interstate, where I saw only one car in the ditch. I pulled my directions out, so I wouldn’t get lost, and started looking for my turn off. I found Western Avenue… and I found the snow. Immediately I found myself on a very vacant road, normally a 4- to 6-lane highway, amongst the few other souls brave enough to be out this morning. Being from the north, I knew exactly what to do. I slowed way down and didn’t make any sudden movements. I began counting lights, my next turn was coming up. At the third stop-light, I moved into the left turn lane, or where I believed it to be, and very lightly pressed my brakes to begin slowing down from my already snail’s-pace of 15 mph. Well… I didn’t stop. I slid. And slid. And slid some more. Into a thankfully vacant intersection. If there hadn’t been 2 cars going through the intersection in the opposite direction, I wouldn’t have tried to stop. But by the time I stopped sliding, I was almost through the intersection. In fact, I was almost up to the other turn-lane’s line.
I waited until it was my turn, almost having to make a U-turn onto the side road, and found myself on another equally snow-covered street. I was beginning to see why the event had been delayed. Having some trouble finding the next street I was supposed to turn on, I called my friend Deanna. When I asked her where McPherson Street was, I heard “Oh, you didn’t hear…? The event was canceled.” A cancellation email was apparently sent out about the time that I left the house, and since I probably had one of the longer drives, I missed it. And I could totally understand why they canceled, being on this snow-covered street. So I began to look for a place where I could turn around where I wouldn’t find myself sliding into a ditch or kissing a pole with my bumper.
Safely navigating my way out of this treacherous snowy neighborhood, I found security on the clear interstate. I was fond of the feeling of my tires hugging the pavement. I decided to go run a few errands since I was already out. Much to my surprise, Target had just stocked my favorite – Throwback Mountain Dew! And it was on sale! I felt like my icy adventure had been redeemed.