Saturday, December 25, 2004

That Was Charming

We made a valiant attempt to get to New Orleans for Christmas, so the kid could do the Christmas thing with her grandparents, but first a giant exciting snow and ice storm hit Northwest Arkansas, putting about two inches of ice on the highways -- and, interestingly, in Arkansas? When that happens? The state police don't close the roads.

They leave them open.

Just to see what happens, I guess.

Maybe to thin the herds a little?

Maybe because this is one of those states where it's Bubba's right to do whatever Bubba wants to with the SUV Bubba bought with Bubba's own money?

Hell if I know. All I know is there we were, eleven o'clock at night, in seven degree weather, driving on the only road going into Jacksonville, Arkansas* that was still not blocked by an overturned SUV, semi truck or multi-car pile up ---

And this road was Highway Five.

A scenic route.

With cliffs.

And trees.

And mountain overlooks.

And did I mention the two inches of ice?

We did, in fact, reach Jacksonville alive. But I might never recover. And the kid said, afterwards, very quietly and politely, "That was a scary drive. Those trees looked like zombie trees to me."

We were stranded in Jacksonville for two days, and have just returned to Fort Smith on Christmas Day -- we thought about trying to reach New Orleans today, until we turned on the weather channel this morning to find it was now snowing there.

In New Orleans, BTW, when that happens? The state police close the roads.

Pretty funny when the police in New Orleans are the sharp ones.

*Where I had earlier, eight hours earlier, via cellphone, nabbed the last unreserved hotel room in a sixty mile vicinity

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