Wednesday, February 2, 2011
Blessings vs. Negatives
This post is about caring friends, prayer, and gratitude.
Monday afternoon as I was about to leave school I received a phone call from a dear friend in Tijeras Canyon telling me that there were white out conditions in the canyon and I probably needed to head home immediately (about a 70 mile drive) or consider spending the night in Albuquerque. I pray the day I can't get home to Sweet Teen just won't happen--she's far from ready to spend even one night in our home without my being there. I began my trip, watching ominous snow clouds over the mountain and praying for wisdom to make the right decisions.
About 20 miles later, I received another call from another friend reminding me I could stay at her house if I couldn't get home. On Sunday a church friend who lives a couple of miles from me gave me her business card and told me to call her if I ever had issues traveling in the weather; she and her husband have a powerful, large four-wheel drive vehicle, and I could leave my car at her work place and pick it up the next day. By the time I reached Albuquerque, it seemed a good idea to phone her; however, she'd already left for the day, and I did not have her cell phone number.
I continued praying and driving cautiously.
I was amazed that although I was listening to a news station with traffic reports, there was very little mention of the weather, and all the traffic reporter said was that it was snowing in the East Mountains.
I might have gotten off I-40 and taken Rt 66 if it weren't for the fact that the snowplows were on the interstate (I saw several) and that the exits were so backed up that it would have taken 15 minutes or more to get onto Rt 66--and I didn't know if they were being plowed.
Snow was heavy, but there was no white-out in the canyon and traffic was fairly light for rush hours.
There was a multiple car accident and several police cars near the west bound crest of Sedillo hill, but traffic was continuing to move in the eastbound lanes. I continued praying and proceeding cautiously. Snow restricted vision but careful concentration helped balance that.
As I passed Edgewood, I passed the border of the heaviest snow, so the last seven miles of the trip were much, much better. I was so grateful to get home and to be able to make a pot of chili--eastern chili, not NM chili.
I'd been fighting stomach issues all day, and during the night they became more serious. I'm not really surprised since so many of my students have been fighting the same thing, coming to school sick, returning to school before they are well and getting sick again. So a little after 4 a.m. yesterday, I signed on to our district's absence website. About an hour and a half later I received a call that our school district was having a two-hour delay. Later, I received a call that our district had canceled school--something that has not happened for somewhere between five and seven years.
My daughter's school had been canceled about 4:00 a.m., so the only venturing out we did yesterday was to take our neighbor some hot fresh oatmeal cookies when she climbed down from shoveling her roof. (Flat roofed southwestern style homes may be photogenic, but they are not a good idea in areas that receive snow.)
Here's some pictures of the sweet birds who sought shelter in the tree outside our window.
Being sick has turned out to be a blessing because it prevented me from even attempting to get out in this.
I'm praying for all the people who have to be out in these frigid temperatures and on the dangerous ice. Yesterday there was little traffic visible from my house--but I did see several huge trucks having difficulty moving--and even one of the local police cars that was experiencing difficulty. I hope most people can stay home and stay safe. This monster storm is much bigger than the weather channel shows!
I hope all the quilters can stay home and enjoy quilting.....