Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Freeze - Day 3 (are you sick of reading about it?)

I called my boss early this morn, seeing what he had to say. He said that we were to report to work around noon...bah. I crawled back in bed for a while, then already restless, got back up. I had to chip away at my side of the driveway with a screwdriver so that I could leave. Luckily, I park my car in the garage, so I didn't have to do what many central Texans had to do (chip their way into their cars).

Ice pile from my side

While I had some time in the morning, I walked (crunched) around the house to survey everything. Our icicles had grown from the days before. The worst thing was that our little Magnolia tree we planted a while back ago (maybe even 2 years ago?) was bent over, heavy with ice, solid ice on its leaves. There's nothing we can do about it...just wait till it thaws and hope it recovers!

Regardless, I thought it was still pretty bad out there. If the news is warning you not to be out..I mean, hello, is there a jewelry emergency??? My boss called me back around 10 am to tell me that Mopac is fine, it's just wet. Um..well, he lives down south and I don't take Mopac. Living in the country means that it's a few degrees colder than in the city of Austin.

Before I left, Sean gave me every tip he could about driving in icy weather. He used to race his car, so knows how cars handle. And he used to live up north as well.

The drive was nasty. Leander and Cedar Park were icy/slushy. And 183 southbound from Leander all the way to Lamar Blvd (about 20 miles to work) was just dreadful. You don't realize how much of 183 is elevated until you have to do a drive like that. Fortunately, there were not many cars on the road. All overpasses had slush. You could follow the tire paths from previous cars, but there was no switching lanes on the overpasses. Some of the slush, even in between the tire paths, were up to the bottoms of cars. I felt my car bottoming out in the slush. And even in some spots where there were tire paths, parts of the tire paths were iced. Luckily, those spots were more rare than common. Points north of 360 were messy. I thought it would get better coming into town, but once I hit that long stretch of solid overpass just south of Burnet, all the way to Lamar...that was pure torture. In total, it took me about an hour to get to work with virtually no traffic (just a few cars out).

Morning - Cedar Park - 183 at New Hope

183 southbound at 360 exit

183 S on the long bridge stretch between Peyton Gin and Lamar exits

Still on the long bridge b/w Peyton Gin and Lamar

You may think..oh, you're such a wimp, that doesn't look bad. But what you don't realize is that Texans don't know how to drive in ice. Texans don't even know how to drive in can they drive in ice??? And heck, I don't know how to drive in ice either, since all I know is the south...I just go slow. But that doesn't mean everyone does. There were a fair share of idiots on the roads today, going too fast for these kind of conditions...and those are the people you have to be aware of.

I left work an hour early to give me 2 hours of daylight to work with, just in case the commute was bad. Luckily, traffic was light. It still took me 50 minutes to get home with very light traffic.

183 Northbound at Spicewood Springs exit

I was glad to get home when I did. I walked around the house to see that the icicles had grown even more, and that our poor Magnolia was now touching the ground due to the weight of the ice.

Tomorrow, the weather is supposed to get above freezing, so all of this should be melting soon...


Blogger textile_fetish said...

Your icicle photo is just like mine only we still have our "icicle" Christmas lights up and they show through.

Pretty lame you had to drive into town. Did you have many customers?

7:45 PM  
Blogger marisa said...

One guy came in, then later a set of people came in..but not really. I think most people stayed at home.

8:19 PM  

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