Monday, June 10, 2013

Rant #980: Super Soaker

I often talk about the weather at this blog, because the weather impacts so many things that are part of our lives.

This weekend, in my neck of the woods, the weather was pretty much picture perfect.

It was warm without being absolutely sweat inducing, the sun was shining, and it was shorts weather outside.

But getting to that point was another matter altogether.

On Friday, we got soaked with rain, the likes of which I hadn't seen in years.

Brought on by the last remnants of Tropical Storm Andrea, this storm was the fiercest one I have seen in these parts maybe ever.

After leaving work, I drove home to buckets and buckets of rain coming down from the sky.

It wasn't only cats and dogs, it was probably a variety of animals not seen since Noah's Ark that pummeled us.

It was very hard to see, and there were not only puddles, but mini-lakes, on the roadways that you had to be aware of.

I drive on the highway much of my destination home, a two-lane highway that was originally built with a lesser volume of traffic in mind.

Now, with so many people taking their cars to work during the week, the roadway is normally bumper to bumper at this hour anyway, but with all the rain pelting us, this was like each car was still bumper to bumper, but separated not by space, but by raindrops.

When I exited the highway, I got onto the major road leading to where I live, and it, too,was bumper to bumper, but traffic was moving as the raindrops continued to fall rapidly.

I thought everything was clear sailing, but boy, was I wrong.

I was about a half mile away from where I live, and traffic pretty much stopped dead in its tracks.

I couldn't see what was up ahead, but being so close to home, it was getting very frustrating to me that I was seemingly so close, yet so far from my destination.

I saw numerous cars making U-turns off the road I was on, and then it pretty much hit me: there must be some newly created rivers up ahead, and people don't want to take a chance of driving their cars through this mess.

And that is exactly what it was.

By the park that we live opposite of, there was a river formed on the road that must have been at least two to three feet deep, which means that if you drove through it, it would be up to at least the middle of the doors on your car.

We received such an amount of rain in such a short period of time--some places got more than five inches on Friday--that even though there was drainage at this part of the road, it could not withstand such a load of rain, so a mini-ocean formed.

I decided to wing it, figuring two things: one, that I was so close to home that I didn't want to veer off elsewhere and have it take me even longer to get to my destination, and two, that my car performed well in other weather conditions, including snow, so I believed it could do well here, too.

So I drove my car through the ocean, all the while holding my breath, and lo and behold, it worked!

Once past there, I was able to get home pretty easily, since so many cars turned around before getting to this mess.

I parked my car, and I saw that our little street was being used as a through street by numerous cars. Evidently, on the other side of the park, another mini-ocean had formed, and it was the safest way for these drivers to get from point A to point B.

But it was just rain, and in a few hours, pretty much everything was back to normal.

I don't remember seeing rain like this where I live ever, and I have been living in this area for more than 40 years.

I have driven in worse, though.

On one of our vacations to Florida, actually coming home from the vacation, I remember that two or three years ago we hit the most massive rainstorm I had ever seen, before or since. It was in the Carolinas on I-95--I think it was South Carolina but I really don't remember for sure--and it lasted for hours.

You could not see in front of you pretty much at all, and I remember that the guy ahead of us for miles and miles also had a New York license plate, and we pretty much followed him through it, at a distance of course.

That was the worst I have ever seen, but this thing on Friday was pretty close to it.

And the forecast today? More rain, but not of the super-soaker type, I am happy to say.

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