The last 10 or so days have been pretty busy. On Sunday the 27th I flew from Orlando to Mexico City. I went from there to Puebla and spent a few days helping to train staff on how to use some new software.
I flew back to Orlando that Wednesday. It was a good trip. Thursday morning I woke up sick as a dog – with a fever and all kinds of other undesirable symptoms. This wasn’t fun and more of an issue than normal because we were supposed to start driving to Iowa on Friday morning.
Fortunately when Friday morning came my fever had broken. I still was sick, but not so sick that I couldn’t ride in the van. So we left a little late, but we still made it half way and spent the night in Nashville. We hit some rain but nothing too bad. The hardest part was the same as it always is, getting through Atlanta. What a mess that is. And even when traffic isn’t too bad the people drive so stupidly that it is still jammed up.
Saturday morning we left Nashville and worked our way up through Kentucky and into Illinois. The effects of that big storm that hit Kentucky earlier this winter were still very evident. I’ve seen trees knocked over, split, etc. in the past but not over such a wide spread area. It was easy to see that it was really bad. Tennessee and Kentucky are still very beautiful.
Basically we had to almost drive the length of Illinois. We went north up to Peoria then hooked around to head west. It was raining pretty hard and that made life interesting but we were still making good time. Somewhere just after Peoria though, it started to snow. That’s when things got really interesting.
My kids were very excited. Having grown up in Arizona and Florida, they have never seen snow falling. They thought that was pretty great. Me, I haven’t driven in snow in about 15 years.
We started seeing cars that had slid off the road. We had to slow down, changing lanes became very difficult and it was getting worse. Right at the Mississippi river I stopped to gas up and have the kids go to the bathroom – because I knew once we got back on we wouldn’t want to stop.
Nothing like driving a couple hundred miles between 20 and 40 mph. We counted 35 vehicles that ended up stuck off the road. 2 were roll-overs. Another was a semi that was completely wrecked because the cab got pushed back around into the trailer.
My wife, who has never driven in those conditions in her life was pretty freaked out. I just kept on, steady, slow and both hands on the wheel. And I made sure to not make any changes in steering that were not very gradual.
It kept snowing hard until we were about 30 miles outside Des Moines. Then the roads were finally clear enough that we could drive the speed limit. That was a great relief.
We drive back to Florida end of this week. That storm was a little atypical so I’m guessing we should have better conditions for the ride home.