Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Road Trip

This year we took a road trip out to my Moms house, it's located in Nebraska, in the middle of the prairie. She and my Dad retired there, to his hometown, and built a cute house, yes, it is a little house on the prairie. The above pic is not their home, that's me standing in front of our cute little cabin in Jackson, Wyoming, as the snow started to fall. We split shortly after this, and headed out on the snowy road. The Snowy, blowy, icy, dangerous Hwy26. Oh, not long after we left the huge blizzard hit ...
Here it is, the road of certain doom. What you can't feel are the 60 mile an hour wind gusts, the -10 temps, or my heart pounding like a drum every time a semi truck drove past us and everything went white. A complete snowy wall of white, it blocked out everything. You couldn't see ahead of you, or if you were about to collide with another vehicle. It was madness. Dan deserves a medal of honor for driving us in it. It got so bad we had to stop hours short of our goal that day, it took 8hours to drive from Jackson to Casper . Usually we could have made it all the way to my parents. Noway this day. Semi trucks were jackknifing, people were in ditches. The roads in central Wyoming became near impassible, and they did close some sections down. Oh Ma, I hope you know how much I love you! So we hid in our hotel room, listening to the storm outside.
The next morning saw it 15 degrees, sunny, and the highway was a sheet of compacted snow. It looked like the Arctic, and I expected a parka clad Sir David Attenborough to step into view and narrate to us about the glorious winter landscape. It was gorgeous, but honestly, I was too worried that we would lose control of the truck to care about the scenery much..
While the storm was over, road conditions continued to be dangerous, so we took it slow. 40 on a road that usually calls for 75mph.Eventually we made it to the Nebraska border, where the storm seemed to have stopped. Nebraska's roads were dry, bare pavement, and the temps climed into the 40's. We were both relieved, Dan drove like heck to get us to Moms by nightfall...another 300 miles away...We made it that night at 8pm..road weary, and needing needing. It was wonderful to be with Mom, she was worried sick.

We arrived safe and sound, and the next day, Dan played bagpipes for Mom. It had an interesting effect on the neighbors herd of Angus.... Here they come!

They were on the other side of the pasture when the first notes from the pipes filled the air. Then they began to call back, mooing gently, heads raised in curiosity, when suddenly they all came a running! The bulls, the cows, calves, all of them. Dan played on. when they reached the fence line they stopped. Fell silent and listened to the pipes. It was as if they were enchanted.This went on for the 20 mins Dan played, then after he finished they all stood. Blinking. Waiting for either food, or more music. Eventually the lead cow wandered away, grazing. She was followed by the rest. Some of them would raise their heads and look back at the house hopefully...