April goes out like a lion and May comes in like a lion.
Friday nite in Denver, trying to get back to the westside from a party on the east side on E- & C-470, I drove through a whiteout reminiscent of mid-February Wyoming blizzards that I thought (hoped, wished, and appealed to all deities) I would never see again. After about 15 minutes I drove out of it, but it was an exciting 15 minutes.
Then, late Sunday evening, after a mostly dry drive down through the great central and southern valleys of central Colorado, we crossed the New Mexico line and hit snow, falling heavily on a white, semi-plowed highway.
A few miles north of Tres Piedras, on that long, lonely stretch down to Ojo Caliente, some guy in a red car came out of the blackness in the rearview and blew by us at about 80 miles an hour, leaving a big plume of white stuff in his wake. His tail lights disappeared into a swirl of snow ahead of us.
A few miles further into the storm, we caught up with him. He wasn’t going anywhere fast. As a matter of fact, he wasn’t going, period. As we came up on the scene, the red car was in the ditch, half-buried in a mess of mud and snow, its doors open, its roof caved in, its headlights casting cockeyed shadows on the embankment. Two dazed young men (from Mexico, I think) were crawling out of the car into the foot-deep snow. We stopped.
They were lucky — must have been wearing seatbelts. The car had rolled. Their belongings that were still inside the car looked like the leftovers from an Alabama tornado. The passenger had a bump on his head; the driver’s only wound was to his reputation.
SS got the slightly injured fella into our car to sip some hot coffee and I got a Spanish-speaking 911 dispatcher on the phone, who, after talking with the driver, told me a police officer and a wrecker were on the way. Another nice young guy from Los Alamos who’d pulled up said he would stay with them until the police arrived, and we drove on.
The moral? Hey, it’s pretty simple. Slow down in the ice and snow. Even if it’s May 1, it’s slick, Slick. And it’ll get ya.
& My knuckles having regained their color, I’m outta here. Sloooowly.