And then I killed everyone, the end

Yesterday was a freak snowstorm in Portland. Granted, we only got 4-6 inches of snow (depending on location & elevation), but it sucked.

As yesterday afternoon wore on, I noticed that facebook statuses of other Portland peeps were starting to announce snow (in a west to east crawl). I looked out the window, and it was definitely snowing.

My boss sent us home at about 3:30. I had driven yesterday, but didn’t think too much of it at the time. The freeway was already backed up, so I went home using my secondary route – 30 to the St. John’s bridge. I got to the bridge, and was on the approach up the hill, when a firetruck went by. Pretty soon, all the cars, from the top of the bridge down, started turning around. Accident on the bridge had closed it.

Traffic hadn’t been TOO bad yet, so I turned around with the rest, hoping to go back to the next bridge (Fremont) to make my way across the river.

Traffic up to 405 was not moving, so I hopped off that road & down to another street, determined to take one of the other bridges.

At this point, it is 4:30, or one hour after getting in my car. It was also at this point that I realized I could not text or make phone calls.

About 5 PM, the architect called (I could RECEIVE calls, apparently). I was not really moving at all at that point. I was trying to decide if I should just try to park somewhere & get on MAX, but there was no where to pull off the road where I was.

Eventually, I made it to the Steel Bridge, and as I was on the approach to cross, the pickup in front of me lost all patience & hopped the curb to drive across a grassy lawn place & onto another street nearby (although at that point, we were so close to crossing the bridge, and all the bridges are like that, so if you needed to cross the river, there was no better way). In the process, his back end spun around & hit the Suburu in front of him. Then he drove off. The angry suburu driver got out & glared. Traffic started moving. We did not. Finally, the pick-up driver parked (like 2 blocks away) and came back. He tried to convince her that he’d done no damage. She wasn’t having it. Finally, they exchanged information. And then, we moved. Well, the suburu moved. My Hyundai? Not as much. I spun my tires & moved inches at a time, but at this point, there was no where to go.

I finally made it onto the final approach to the bridge, and my car just gave up. It died a couple of times, and would only move if I was in reverse. Which wasn’t helpful, because a) there were a ton of (really angry) cars behind me, and b) I couldn’t spin around to drive over the bridge in reverse, which would’ve sucked anyways.

I’ll be honest, internets. I cried. And then I called the architect (yay, the phone was working) and cried. Apparently on speaker phone, so the kick-ass neighbors got to hear my breakdown, too.

And then, like magic, three young men appeared out of the storm. There were actually six men on the bridge, working in teams of three, and pushing cars that weren’t making it. They pushed me all the way up to the top of the bridge so that I could make it across. (I don’t think that bridge crossing has sucked so much since the Race for the Roses 5K when running up that approach in the last 1/3 mile of the race almost made me vomit.) I love those nice young men. Without them, I’d still be on the Steel Bridge, crying.

Once I got to the east side of the river, the rest of the drive home wasn’t so bad – only took about 30 more minutes (usually a 15 minute drive). I pulled into my driveway a little after 6:30, and have never been so happy to be home (part of that happiness was the fact that I’d had to pee since about 3:35).

After I got home (and peed), the neighbors, the architect & I went out for much needed beers & food, and then I was home in bed. There is still snow everywhere. I had the architect drive me to work today, and we drove by a LOT of snowmen. And instead of being filled with joy over the beauty of the snow, I was just filled with an almost overwhelming compulsion to get out of the pickup & knock the heads off all the snowmen, because snow is EVIL!

Recent Comments

    • gazelle
      December 31, 2009 - 6:05 pm ·

      Yeah, my kids are cats, and they weren’t impressed at all. Sometimes I think having kids wouldn’t be TOO bad, because of the whole ‘getting to see the magic of crap like snow & xmas through their innocent eyes’ thing, but then I remember that I might have to go outside in the snow & help them build snowmen, and I’m glad the cats don’t want to do that. 🙂

  • Alisa
    December 30, 2009 - 3:18 pm ·

    Yikes! Sorry for your crappy commute but I gotta say I LOVE snow. Granted I was driving around in it yesterday but I love it. It’s so clean and bright looking so much better than cold rain.

    • gazelle
      December 31, 2009 - 6:04 pm ·

      It sure was pretty. For about 3 minutes. 🙂 I’m glad you didn’t have to be out & about! Even though your car would’ve handled it better than mine!

  • kristen
    December 30, 2009 - 5:41 pm ·

    I know exaclty what you are talking about here. It makes me crazy! I snoflake and it’s full force panic mode. Ugh. So sorry. I’m glad you finally made it home without having to exchange insurance information with anyone!

    • gazelle
      December 31, 2009 - 6:03 pm ·

      Our roads were AWFUL! A slippery, slushy, icy mess. And since it was a SURPRISE snowstorm (not predicted AT ALL) no one had chains with them. I’d like to pretend that if I’d known about the impending snow storm of doom, I’d have been prepared, but since I don’t even own chains, much less know how to put them on, I’m not sure that would’ve helped. In my defense, I lived in South Dakota for 22 years (and drove in South Dakota for 8 years) and never owned chains there, either.

      STILL! Snow. I hates it.

  • Jen
    December 30, 2009 - 7:01 pm ·

    Barf!!! I was soooo glad I wasn’t driving yesterday. I heard stories a lot like this all day at work today. Terrible! Glad it’s all melted and let’s just forget about it until happens again.

    • gazelle
      December 31, 2009 - 6:01 pm ·

      I hardly ever drive to work, because I can’t park on the hill, and have to pay for parking, then take the tram. I can’t believe that Tuesday of all days was the day I decided I was too lazy for mass transit.

    • gazelle
      December 31, 2009 - 6:01 pm ·

      seriously. I was so relieved when they showed up to help that I almost offered to have their babies. yay for the kindness of strangers!