Laughs, Lessons, & Kudos

I certainly haven’t held back this past week regarding last week’s weather fiasco in Atlanta, but as promised, this post is dedicated to some of the more light-hearted aspects.

Wednesday, January 29 was pretty memorable in a couple of ways: Somewhere around 9:30 AM that morning, my mom conceded. She admitted that this fiasco was worse than “Snow Jam 1982!” I’ve been hearing about Snow Jam ’82 for my entire life, so I knew it was huge. The storm came in during the early afternoon hours on a Tuesday afternoon, as predicted (in that case, I can somewhat understand schools choosing not to close), and it resulted in very similar scenes across the city. As this all happened on my 3-month birthday, I don’t personally remember any of it, but I’m still choosing to wear the badge honor and say that I lived through it.

But what really made Wednesday a day to remember was an ordeal that began at 5:30 PM the day before, when my husband left work. As I mentioned in my last post, he was stranded for 21 hours in his car on Highway 166. He posted this video on Facebook at 12:48 PM on Wednesday, January 29, a little less than two hours before he made it home.

Lebrean’s Facebook Status

I can guarantee that this would not have been my disposition after 19 hours. I was done after FOUR hours…which brings me to the next entertaining moment:

Let me just express how much love I have for the driver of this truck. I would’ve hugged him if I’d had the chance. When I was about three miles from my exit during my commute home on Tuesday, several drivers decided their destinations were more important than all of ours, so their VIP status granted them the liberty to use the emergency lane, regardless of the need for actual emergency vehicles to use it. So after about three or four VIPs made it through, I decided to straddle the line and block the others I saw coming. One could say I had guts…only I didn’t, because either I wasn’t blocking it enough, or I inched back over the more aggressive they got, in order to avoid being hit. Well, this kind soul in front of me (who obviously shares my aggression) did the work for me! The VIPs may have succeeded in intimidating me, but this guy and his 18 wheels won. One pick-up truck was determined to still try and make it; he inched along right beside me (in the emergency lane) before finally getting back over behind me. I’m not sure what he thought was going to happen, but it took about a mile for him to realize that my friend (truck driver) wasn’t going to let him through. There are simply no words for how entertained I was. Guess you had to be there.
What’s also quite entertaining is the video I posted of Lebrean pulling into the garage when he finally made it home. What my friends on Facebook didn’t see/hear is the very beginning of the video, which captured my delirium/confusion:
Side note: This might the most entertaining comment about that video (the edited version): “Gotta be a Boss to get your homecoming captured on video!”

I barely slept or ate during all of this, so I was completely exhausted; simple math was just too much to handle.

I realize that my level of exhaustion was nothing compared to those who were stranded, but it was pretty grueling for those of us waiting helplessly at home. I experienced a huge sense of relief as I checked off friends and family members one by one, as they made it home. But until everyone is safe, you simply can’t rest. I’m not only grateful for everyone’s safety, I’m also quite amazed that out of the number of people I personally knew who were stranded, not a single one wrecked their car or was injured.
I was also amazed at how many people were regularly checking in on Lee’s progress and on my state of being, even a friend whose boyfriend was in the same situation (just a different interstate). Thank you all so much! In hindsight, it doesn’t seem like such a huge deal, but it was mentally, emotionally, and physically exhausting, so knowing there were people who were truly concerned was very comforting.
I think we all learned a few lessons through all of this. Regardless of what the “officials” say and the judgement calls they make, we are adults, and we reserve the right to use our own judgement; actually, I think we have a personal responsibility to. I’m pretty sure there will be fewer people who will ask to leave early when they see/hear that conditions are dangerous. I was obviously one of the majority who chose to go to work that day, but I left earlier than we “closed,” because not only was I watching the reports as they unfolded (kudos to WSB TV and whomever manages their Twitter account), but I also learned my lesson in 2011, after skidding on ice, narrowly missing a car in front of me, and missing a guardrail by inches–not to mention my mom’s wreck years ago, when she slid across four lanes on the interstate. All of this is why I take NO CHANCES when it comes to ice on the roads. Having an experience like that is all it takes…or it should, anyway.
It’s been a lot of fun seeing how much my blog has been visited and shared, and reading the comments (on here, via email, and on Facebook) during the past week! Thanks so much!
As I close, I’d like to share this comment I received a couple of days ago:
“While throwing stones you are also praising. I love your style and blogs!”

Given that feedback, I think it’s only fitting that I close with these points:

Major kudos to Woodward Academy! Rewarding each bus driver with $1,000 is beyond incredible, especially when there are 45 of them! When I awoke to this story earlier this week, I thought being in a sleep fog caused me to misunderstand. I was truly speechless.

(Sideways Praise)
In stark contrast, thanks to Erroll Davis, for acknowledging his incredible lapse in judgement.

And finally, kudos to Henry County (sorry, I’m not sure what other schools were closed that day–clearly not many)!

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