Thursday, January 24, 2013
#856 today there was freezing rain
I used to think that the iPod was the greatest invention of my lifetime. Now I'm having second thoughts. Maybe the greatest invention in my lifetime is IceMelt. I'm a big fan.
It was supposed to snow overnight and this morning. The news channels were all reporting on the storm that was coming in and we were going to get one to three inches of snow in the valley and it would be a messy commute this morning. Well, the commute was messy, but not because of snow. It didn't snow at all. It iced.
What I mean is that it snowed in the higher elevations, then as the snow it the warmer air, it melted and became rain and when the rain came through the inversion layer and into the frigid valley, it turned straight to ice. When the water hit the roads, the roads became skating rinks for cars. Cars can't skate.
There were dozens of wrecks on the freeways this morning. The airport had to be shut down because the runways were iced over and planes were skidding around.
Around 6:30 this morning, MT called me and told me not to take I-15 because it was a shiny parking lot. At 7:00 I was looking at the traffic report and wondering how I would get to my office. Around 7:30, I got a call from my boss telling me that if I hadn't left the house yet, I should just stay home for a few hours. I took T to school and came back home. I kept checking the traffic app, and the incident icons were all over the map. K called me to make sure I was ok, and I told her I was going to hang out at home.
By noon, it looked like the roads were not as shiny, so I thought I might go to the office. I headed outside to start my car. The steps, the sidewalk and the driveway were shiny with ice and I was parked in the middle of the driveway. It seemed like a daunting challenge just to get to my poor little ice-covered Corolla.
Slowly, carefully, I stepped down the first step. My foot skibbled around and I jerked it back up on the top step. I tried again and actually made it out about ten feet. I was standing on the grass by the driveway where MT had tamped down the snow to get into his truck. It was all icy. The new ice had formed a crust over the hard-packed snow and it was awful. I finally made it over to my car and decided the very best thing to do would be to go to the store and buy some IceMelt.
I came home with a 50 pound bag of IceMelt, a bucket and a scoop. Best $26 I ever spent. I spread at least - AT LEAST - 10 pounds of IceMelt all over my driveway, my steps and the sidewalk. I'm pretty sure my environment-loving husband doesn't think I'm too neat, spreading out all that IceMelt, but I loved every sprinkle. I have a tremendous fear of sliding and falling. I do not want to fall on this new knee I've got.
That whole adventure took about 90 minutes. I called K and told her I'd see her tomorrow, then I watched TV and read a book.
When it was time to pick T up after play practice, I walked outside confidently, secure in the knowledge that the IceMelt had done it's job. And that was mostly true until I got to the bottom of the stairs and slid and wobbled but remained upright. There had been a little melting and the water pooled at the bottom of the steps and it was SLICK. My joints felt a little twisty, but I'm ok. I sprinkled another couple of pounds of IceMelt around the bottom of the steps and in a few other spots.
The good news is that the IceMelt did work really great on the big iceberg I had in the middle of the driveway. I was able to scrape all those icy chunks up and toss them onto the snow, where they just sat on top of the ice layer. It's strange but kind of cool - the snow in the yards is all glassy and shiny on top. You can step through it to break the crust. I don't think I've ever seen anything like it in the valley. Freezing rain is really rare here in SLC. I think I'd rather have a blizzard. The ice is just scary.
I'm thankful for IceMelt.