Saturday, February 28, 2009

Saturday Evening

It's a cold Saturday evening and the snow continues to fall. The sky is still overcast and has been that way all day. Coffee (goin' with the decaf, though) and the computer are a good combination on an evening like this one.

I received a call before I left the house that there had been a tanker accident on the Interstate and part of the highway would be shut down for most of the afternoon. I was told that they had set up a detour but the traffic would probably be moving by the time I got there (I was still about two hours away). Wrong! I hit the highway parking lot several miles before the detour and managed to spend the next hour moving a mere 5-6 miles. Once that jam broke up, I managed about 30 of the remaining 50 miles at a relatively good pace considering that it was stil snowing and there were still numerous unskilled drivers sharing the highway with me.

I know that under certain conditions it doesn't take much to go into a slide and wind up in a ditch. However, with a little extra attention to detail, this is an avoidable accident. I'm sure that one day I'll find myself in the ditch and other drivers will be wondering how I got there. Mostly I'm just puzzled by the number of vehicles that end up in the ditch next to roads that are easily managed, in spite of the wintry conditions.

I can think of two things that add to the problem. First, Missouri does an awful job of clearing the roads. I've lived in Central Illinois, north of Chicago, Northwest Indiana and Northeast Iowa...all places that receive way more snow than Missouri. Missouri DOT is the doubt about it...the worst. Second, maybe we just don't get enough snow for anybody to become an experienced winter driver. Here's a hint: When there is snow or ice on the road, you can't drive like the roads are dry and expect to stay out of trouble! Slow down. Pay attention.

The weather caused the cancellation of tonight's session. Two of the evangelists didn't make it in yet and several of the participating churches have already cancelled morning services. The church where I am scheduled in the morning will be holding service and is not too far from the hotel. I'm glad. I really hate to miss an opportunity to preach. The church that I'm scheduled for in the evening has already cancelled the morning service and will have just one service tomorrow. They've decided on a 2:30pm service and no evening service. I guess I'll have lunch after the morning service, preach the afternoon service and then try to make it to one of the evening services where another of the evangelists will be preaching. Chris is going to try to make it up tomorrow afternoon and then spend the night. Hannah will stay with a friend. It should be a grand day!

I hope that you are warm and safe tonight. If you are, give thanks to God for all of your blessings.

John <><


Mike said...

No snow in St. Louis. It all went to the South of here.

Sicilian said...

We shut down here when snow graces us. . . the only defense TXDOT has is to throw sand on the highways.I think we rival MO in removal of snow. I have driven home in snow in the northern part of TX around Amarillo. . . . they do know how to clear snow up there.
I share your thoughts about accidents and snow. . . it is caution. . .awareness. . .. and courtesy when dealing with bad weather. . . most drivers don't have those skills in normal driving conditions.
I hope your preaching went well. . . . do any churches you go to post them on line? If so email me the links. . . I would love to hear them.

Claudia said...

Has Mike told you? Ted Drewes on Chippewa is open for the new season! Haven't stopped in yet, but I did a drive-by a week ago Friday and saw the folks lined up!Looking forward to our next conflab there!

Bilbo said...

We're hunkered down here in Northern Virginia waiting for the snow that's headed up the coast to get here. The winter storm warning started at 2:00 PM, but the new forecast says the worst of the storm will hit between 8:00 PM and 2:00 AM. What this means in the DC area is that the crews will proabably have the main highways all cleared by the morning rush hour, and the government will tell everyone they're expected to be at work on time. Unfortunately, none of the local roads that connect to the main highways will have been cleared, so people will either have to burn up vacation days to stay home, or risk all the accidents trying to get out to the main roads. I love winter in DC.

vw: sapowber - the month that didn't make the cut for the Julian calendar.

Bilbo said...

Update: the snow's here. Shall I send some your way?

vw: bunorse - everything I can think of is too dirty to write...