Let it snow, let it snooooow.........

Dear Blogger,

Winter is finally here. So far we didn't have any snow and it hasn't been too cold, but in the last days of this year, Mother Nature saw fit to dump about 35-40cm of snow. Now it looks like Christmas.

All that snow made the roads truly awful. What makes them just worse is that a few hours ago we had a little bit of snow. That little bit melted just enough through the salt of the gritters, but there was not enough traffic to drive it in, so it made the roads glassy. So now we have thick, mushy pack of snow on top of a thin film of ice. This is where I'm glad that I own a “tank” for a car.

My lovely car is a big, four door, V40 Volvo that chews itself through the snow. It has this really neat feature called 'traction'. I am loving traction. Every time my car started to get stuck in a mound of snow or slip on the ice, the traction kicked in and I didn't get stuck or slide around. I could still feel my car slipping but mostly during a turn. The traction doesn't kick in if the tires are sliding sideways. But traction control combined with a heavy car and slow driving made things less scary. Except the people tailgating me. Seriously, use your brain and get off my butt in weather like this. The traffic was fully disrupted and nearly no busses were running. Also travellers by train got stuck as the tracks were frozen, hmmn why does our country get in trouble with a bit of snow. Is it that we are still not prepared on weather conditions like this? How do countries like Norway, Sweden and Finland with this as they have got every winter snow like this? I think it is time to invest in materials to concur the winter.

I did have to go out in the ick today, which is good. I am not nervous about driving in weather like this so the more practice I get when the roads aren't crowded the better I'll be. So today I learned again how to handle my car when it slides, how to rock my car to get unstuck, and how to brake in slippery stuff. My instructor taught me two things that helped immensely: the first is that if you start to get stuck, try not to stop your car. The more you stop to shift gears the more of a rut you will create. Keep slowly plowing away if you can to get the momentum going and you should be ok. Assuming you aren't stuck from sliding into a curb or something. The second is that when you brake, use a series of tiny taps to get your car to stop. No slamming on the brakes even with ABS. Lightly tap over and over quickly and your car will come to a stop without sliding. Assuming you are traveling below the speed limit, that is.

The dangerous part of it is that not all of us have the brains to take it easy, what actually surprised me that these huge trucks simply overtake you with a speed that I think is crazy. In the first few hours of the morning more then 25 trucks slid off the road. I guess that they are so stressed by their boss and their planner who does not care about the road conditions. According to the weather man there will be more snow coming and they keep on warning about slippery roads. Thank God it is nearly Christmas it might be a white one.

Thank you, and bless the inventors of traction control :)

The Old Sailor,


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