My thoughts released; a mind set free
|My plans from yesterday were to spend a bit more time in WdC today, but last nights weather forced a change in plans.
I knew we were supposed to get rain and possibly a thunderstorm yesterday, with the chances increasing as the day passed. the worst wasn't suppose to hit until about midnight, which would have seen me safely home before the worst of the weather arrived.
But, the rain didn't come when it was suppose to, it waited until later in the evening; the storms, however, decided to arrive earlier than scheduled. The last couple hours of my shift were filled with rain, some light, some heavy. There was a lot of lightning and some gusting winds, but nothing severe. By the time I got done with work and started my drive home, it was light rain and a bit of lightning, nothing severe.
Shortly after, however, some heavy rain arrived, stronger winds, and a lot of lightning ripping through the dark skies. With wipers on high, I proceeded on my way, enjoying the beauty of the storm as it passed over. Half way home, the enjoyment came to an abrupt end when extremely heavy rain and powerful gusts of wind made it impossible to see much, even with the wipers swishing back and forth at their highest speed.
I of course reduced speed, and since there was very little traffic, focused my attention on staying on my side of the road and continued towards the turn off that would point me towards home. As I climbed the hill right before this turn, the storm hit with vengeful force. My little car was being buffeted relentlessly by the winds, the amount of rain, driven by powerful winds made it impossible to travel at speeds over twenty miles per hour, and I slowed even more as I forced my ride to hold the proper lane of the highway.
As I peaked the top of the hill, the sound of the storm was deafening. Visibility dropped to a point were I could barely see past the hood, the beams from my headlights drowning in the downpour. I managed to get to the shoulder of the road with plans to sit there until the worst passed over. But even as I pulled onto the shoulder, the force of the wind began sliding the car back onto the highway. It also was tipping the car as if it desired to roll me across the highway and down into the opposite ditch. It's difficult to know, but it seemed as if there were a few times the passenger side tires left the road and the tilt of the vehicle was enough to send items sliding to the drivers side.
I couldn't come to a complete stop, for fear of getting blown right off the road my only option was to creep along and attempt to force my way against the wind and hold to my shoulder of the road. It was at this point that the drivers side windshield wiper blew right off the windshield, hanging at a useless position on my side mirror. The passenger side wiper was still functioning, but the drivers side was done for. As another blast of wind again tried to roll me over, the passenger side wiper gave way to the force of the wind and stopped halfway down the drivers side of the car.
Without them, I could see nothing but a river of water flowing from the force of the wind across my windshield and had to come to a full stop and hope for the best. It wasn't the best, but it was enough of a drop in the ferocity of the storm for me to see again; very limited, but enough to crawl along to my turn and continue towards home.
It's at this point that there are two slews, one on each side of the road, that I had to pass. No shoulders, just a drop on either side to the murky waters. The rain had let up substantially, and I proceeded at a safe speed. As I passed between these two bodies of water, the wind again struck with gale force and waves of water from the slew to my left washed over my car. It may have been safest to stop right there and wait it out, but I was concerned that the force of the wind, along with the amount of water pounding the driver's side of the car, could and would, push me over the embankment. I crossed at a snails pace.
Once safely across, I felt my way to the side of the road, since the rain had intensified again and I couldn't see anything. Here I stopped and called Rhonda to let her know I wasn't moving until the storm let up and I could see to drive again. As the storm let up, I got out and put the wipers back to their home position, then proceeded at a very reduced speed with my flashers on, even though I had not seen another motorist out.
The storm continued to diminish and eventually I was able to increase speed to about forty miles per hour and made it home. Of course, it was much later than normal, and I was a bit wound up from the stressful drive, so I wasn't at all ready to go to bed anytime soon. It also means that when I finish this entry, I need to go out and look at the wipers and find out what broke as well as how to fix them.
Luckily, the forecast has changed and it's looking like nice dry weather for the next few days, so if needed, I can still drive the car to work this afternoon and tomorrow. I have Friday off and can, if needed, spend it working on my wipers.