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Sometimes it’s best to turn back. December 27, 2012

Posted by ourfriendben in wit and wisdom.
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Silence Dogood here. Yesterday, our friend Ben and I took to the highway for a lengthy road trip. It was snowing when we stopped for lunch before heading out, but when we left the restuarant, it was really snowing: We were in the eye of yesterday’s vicious storm, but we didn’t know it. So, unfazed, OFB took us on the steep, winding backroad that connects the little town of Kutztown, PA to the major highway that crosses the state.

I, however, was far from unfazed. Coming from the South, even after all these years in PA I’m still terrified of winter driving when there’s snow or sleet. Even on the main street through town, I saw cars skidding. And as our car skidded and slipped on the steep backroad with its serious drops on each side, I was white-knuckling it and gasping in terror.

OFB thought highway conditions might be better, and suggested that we get on the highway and see. By now we were pondering the necessity of turning back, as disappointing as it would be to us and those who were waiting for us on the other end of the trip.

Sure enough, after plowing through the slippery snow on the highway, watching the (comparatively) few cars skidding, crawling along at 25 mph, seeing semis with their hazard lights flashing, and encountering a sign warning drivers on the normally 65-mph road to go no faster than 45 (which some idiots were actually doing), we got off at the first exit and made our way back to Hawk’s Haven, our little cottage in the middle of nowhere.

We were demoralized and disappointed, but very grateful to have returned home in one piece. After all, if we’d ended up in the hospital (or worse), we wouldn’t have made it on time, either. Fortunately, we didn’t see the photo of the semi truck hanging over the side of a bridge on the same highway we were traveling, its cab suspended in midair, until later.

Once home, we contacted hotels, family, the petsitter, and etc. and announced (after carefully checking the forecast) that we’d be pushing our trip back one day and would try again the next morning. Then we turned on the Christmas tree lights, had a cocktail, I made a nice supper, and we watched a movie, as the wind roared around the house and snow and sleet pelted the windows. Inside our little nest, all was calm and bright. Sometimes, it’s best to turn back.

Wishing you all safe holiday travels.

‘Til next time,