It always amazes me how people underestimate the weather. Especially adults who may or may not have lived their entire lives in a particular area, so should be well aware of some of the risks and pitfalls they may face on account of weather. And it doesn’t always have to be bad weather, either. That makes it even worse. An example of this came yesterday, when I left Regina to travel to Saskatoon for my eye injections. I awoke reasonably early and followed my usual weekday routine of preparing Nathan’s lunch for school, followed by enjoying some caffeine and my breakfast shake.
While I was getting my bag packed for the overnight in Saskatoon, I made a point of checking the weather. One might think this is a worthless step, as I would need to reach the appointment no matter how cold it is but it’s a habit I’ve formed over the years. What’s interesting is that in Saskatchewan, the weather is almost inhumanly cold. I’m talking -50 with the windchill factored in. Meanwhile, most people back home in New Brunswick will consider it very cold in the minus 20’s, which is almost laughable EXCEPT for the fact they get tons of snow. But I digress…
I checked the weather in both Regina and Saskatoon and was surprised to notice that at 7 a.m. with the daylight barely breaking, that it was only -6 degrees out. Most people would think that this is a good thing, as it would mean milder weather for the trip. Well, yes… Maybe but it also means something dangerous that the average person doesn’t consider: the highways will become a skating rink for a short period of the morning as the sun’s heat brings out the permafrost from beneath the roadways. It can make high speeds treacherous and drivers usually pay it no mind or consider it.
I usually don’t take chances with being late at the best of times, so I left early enough to be able to drive slowly and avoid an unnecessary landing in the ditch. I was travelling on the highway and was only doing about 95 km/h on a 110 km/h highway. That sort of driver usually pisses me off to no end, if I’m being honest. But that’s usually in the case where caution isn’t as necessary. This morning it was necessary. It was still early and I had plenty of time to make my appointment so I ignored the drivers who must have been frustrated with my speed, whipping past me on the passing lane; a passing lane that was coated with frost from being used LESS than the main lane of travel…
Then, it happened. I was driving down one side of a valley and slowing so as not to lose control on the way down. The main travel lane seemed completely thawed but I wasn’t taking chances. Apparently, some douchebag in a Volkswagen disagreed and passed me on the left doing a significant amount of speed. His vehicle suddenly veered and bounced off the safety cable lining the left side of the highway. This caused his vehicle to veer towards the right side of the highway and off of the roadway. I came to a stop on the curb, activated my hazard lights and ran back to check on the driver. He was uninjured and was already on his cell phone contacting a tow truck.
I asked him if he needed help and he seemed frustrated as he said he was fine and would wait for the tow truck on his own. I got back in my car and continued driving. I couldn’t help but feel that he was frustrated at me for driving slowly as he likely wouldn’t have had to pass if I weren’t in front of him. But hey, I didn’t ask him to drive fast on a slippery road. This is a prime example of how we cause our own suffering. But the lesson here is that nature doesn’t discriminate nor does it care about one’s schedule. Give the weather the respect it deserves, good or bad. It could mean the difference between reaching your destination or sitting in the ditch, pissed off and late. Food for thought… ☯️
2 thoughts on “Live And Learn…”
Well said: nature doesn’t discriminate nor does it care about one’s schedule…. Usually I don’t care if there is rainfall forecast, and I am on the walk, because I believe that if there is rainfall, I would stay on some location and enjoy the rainy mood. But during one time, due to rainfall I had to stay in the same location for more than an hour. It was fun initially and I didn’t have any schedule on that day but latter it was boring. At that time, I realized why it is important to get prepared for every weather forecast.
Yes, preparation is key… Ensuring you wear the proper clothing, checking the weather forecast and bringing supplies if you need them (water, fast-acting carbohydrates, etc…)
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