Shortly after I had moved out of my parents’ house, I found myself in a situation that was not exactly enviable: I had to drive across the state early on Christmas morning to see everyone to whom I had promised an appearance. This was about a one-hundred mile journey, and, by my figuring at the time — which was correct — I would have to leave my apartment at about five in the morning to make time for everyone and still be home around midnight; my independence at the time was fresh and I was committed to not staying with my parents for a night if I could manage to avoid it.

winter driving

The problem with that, aside from the obvious issues, was that the night before about two feet of snow had fallen, and I was heading out before snowplows had hit the roads. I was okay when I was still in the city, but when I got onto the country highway, I immediately saw my problem — or, rather, I didn’t see it: the road was completely invisible. Just a sheet of white was all I saw before me. With no cars having come before me, there weren’t even any tire tracks that I could follow.

Needless to say, I drove very, very slow. It was excruciating. And when I passed through another city where I could actually see the road, I ended up skidding through an intersection because the road was solid ice. I had been going too fast; I got too confident because I could finally see the road. Thankfully, nobody else was on the road at the time, and I managed to get to my parents’ unscathed. I was late, of course, but I think I should have taken it even slower.

Of course, I still went home; I ended up shirking a couple of my commitments, but I made it home at about one in the morning. The roads were much better, of course. And when the snows came again the very next day, I was pleased that I didn’t have to get on the roads again.