The last couple of days have been harrowing. We set off home after work on Friday knowing that we'd make it just shy of half way - we aimed for, and got to, Binghamton in New York. When we pulled in to the hotel, Joe went in to check in and came out looking grim. "They are expecting a foot an a half of snow tomorrow, starting early in the morning." We still had five and a half hours to go and, according to the weather channel, all but a few miles would be in the area affected by the winter storm. We comforted ourselves by telling ourselves that the weather predictions always exaggerate.
They didn't exaggerate.
The first couple hours of the drive were hellish. We left early, before the plows had been able to do much with the snow, and for long stretches we were the only vehicle on the road. After we turned west at Syracuse, we got a break from the storm, we hoped, and prayed, that we were done with the snow.
At Buffalo it started falling and once we crossed the border we knew we were in for a difficult ride. About Hamilton I told Joe that the whole way I'd been worried. There are times that my status as a disabled person causes me anxiety because of a feeling of vulnerability. Driving through the storm, seeing cars off the side of the road, many abandoned, I knew that if something happened to us, if we slid into a ditch, I wasn't getting out of the car. We had rented a wheelchair van and I sat strapped to the floor on a vehicle that I'd not be able to get out of without a lot of struggle, a lot of effort.
Joe then told me that he'd been worried about exactly the same thing. He felt the responsibility to get us home safely, a normal thing, but that feeling was intensified because of my disability. He said that whenever he saw people standing outside, in the blowing cold, looking at their vehicle buried in snow - he wondered if there were passengers, who couldn't get out, left in those cars. He worried for the panic they'd be feeling.
We got home.
But the trip took five hours longer than it should have. And not just five hours - five BIG hours of worry and stress.
But we're home safe.
And we're here now for awhile.