This could have been me…but it wasn’t
This weekend I made the trip to lovely West Lafayette, Indiana to work the Wisconsin @ Purdue game for CBS. It was an exciting game. Somebody won and then it was over. The game is not my story. It is what happened AFTER the game that I am here to tell you about.
We finished the game and it was time for me to make the 3 hour drive back to Cincinnati. Starts out okay. I stopped off, got me some Steak N Shake (love the mocha shakes!) and continued on my way with my IPod shuffling through a whole slew of Journey songs (who knew my IPod likes Steve Perry?). I got to about 60 miles outside Cincinnati and BAM! Traffic is at a standstill. Oooookay. I figure I have my cell phone, my IPod, my ITouch and plenty of things I can do…so I figure I’ll wait it out. Until it gets to about an hour later and we’re STILL sitting there. I then start to rethink my decision. I fire up my Garmin (a GPS that my wife got me for Christmas last year) and decide I’m gonna find a back route and get moving. I pull a u-turn and head back about 5 miles to the last exit.
So things are going okay. I’m on some backwoods Indiana road and cruising along at about 40 miles an hour. Off to my left I see the traffic still sitting on the interstate. So now I’m feeling pretty good about my decision. Until…up in the distance I see a place to enter back onto the interstate! Got some Bruce Springsteen playing (“Born To Run” if you must know) and I accelerate just a little. Suddenly…I’m fishtailing all over the place! First left, then right, then I’m turning completely around and off the side of the road. My car slams into something and ends up resting peacefully in some grass. No trees, other cars or guard rails to hit, but there must have been a curb or something there because I remember the hit when I went off the road. So there I sat. Not really shaken or anything. Like I said, I really didn’t feel like I was going that fast, but it is kinda freaky to lose control of your car like that. But I didn’t want to sit in the grass for too long because I didn’t want to get stuck in some mud or snow.
So I restarted my car and pull back off onto the road. Only now, my wheel is bumping along and my steering wheel is vibrating like a jackhammer. A quick stop in a parking lot and a call to “OnStar” (the first time I’ve ever used the system. Glad I’m paying $20 a month for that!) tells me that my anti-lock brakes are screwed up and I should visit my local Saturn dealer as soon as I can. Well…thanks for that, OnStar lady, but it’s Sunday night and I doubt anyone is up to check that for me, so I guess I’ll just continue on my way.
It’s now rolling into hour 4 in my car and my back is screaming at me. I’m irritated with my “accident” and now my car is acting broken and my IPod keeps playing crappy songs that I don’t want to hear. So I plod back onto the freeway (apparently they cleared the accident that was blocking the way) and I pulled in with everyone else who was going 20 mph in the right hand lane. My car continued to shimmy, but I pulled over several times along the way and checked the tire and everything seemed to be okay. Heading west (going the other way) I saw several accidents and a couple that were pretty big. Don’t know what was going on, but it was just a mess tonight. So I’m glad I made it home in one piece. It only took me 5 and a half hours! And I’m seriously glad that there were no cars heading my way when I lost control of my car. And I am now concerned about how much it is gonna cost me to get my car fixed. I’m sure it won’t be cheap.
So that’s it. I’m okay. My back aches from sitting so damn much, but if that’s the worst thing that comes out of this, then I’m good with that. And from now on…if there is traffic stoppage on a dark highway on a freezing night in Indiana, I wait it out.