I am Walter and this is my World.

I am Walter and this is my World.

Friday, January 29, 2010

STORM HAS STOPPED US (but not for long!)

This is what's happening in NASHVILLE people!

Wally and I were over half-way to our destination down south when we got blindsided by a freak storm. "Worst ice storm in a decade hits the Tennessee Valley" and THAT's where Wally and I are! I was too QUICK to say "we're almost there!" After a great start it took us 7 hours to drive a hundred miles today. We saw dozens and dozens of cars off the road. Semis, four-wheelers, trucks, state troopers...an ambulance - wham, all off the road. A combination of ice, freezing rain, snow, sleet and wind created some of the WORST driving conditions this northern girl has EVER seen.

Plus, these Tennesseans and Kentuckians, who are sweet and awesome and helpful do not know a lot about ice driving and why would they? The last time they saw a blizzard like this in the Tennessee Valley was 1996. They have no snow plows and bless their hearts, the DMV treated the roads with beet juice in preparation for the storm. Beet Juice? do beets have some naturally occurring antifreeze element? All I know is juice is liquid, and if they hosed the highways down with liquid before the storm hit - no wonder they were like skating rinks.

but FEAR NOT my dear friends! If there's anything this Minnesota Girl knows how to do - it's drive on ice. I was like a pace car on the highway today...driving "aggressively slow" with my blinkers on. We crawled the whole way from Nashville to Chattanooga at 10-12 mph and led about 20 cars, who also put their blinkers on, down the highway. The good news is we reached Chattanooga and landed one of the last hotel rooms in town. The bad news is there's a teen Christian music convention in town. Kids with guitars. Practicing. In their hotel rooms.

But Wally can sleep through anything!

This is a small set back - a trifle! We will not be stopped! We will however, be delayed. We're staying at a hotel until this ridiculousness ends. Walter has been a spectacular passenger and his backseat apartment has served as an excellent scamperland. The bad cut on his foot is almost completely healed now - it hampered rehab in a serious way - but it's almost totally better and I cannot wait for him to pee on grass!!!!! Meanwhile, anyone know of stuff to do with dogs in a blizzard in Chattanooga? Yup...looks like it's time to start the next book. :)

Eric, Steve and everyone in FL - we're coming! Hold tight!!!!!! Everyone please continue to pray for our safe travels...it's what kept us from going into the ditch today!


Becky said...

That is one heck of a mess on the highway! Good that you know how to drive in that, I would just have to pull over and wait. Happy to hear his foot is almost back to 100%. Be careful!

Stubby said...

Hi Heather & Wally! I can't believe that ice storm - yucky! And for you to say this is the worst driving conditions you have ever seen is saying a lot. I'm so glad you guys are safe and sound in Chattanooga.

I, like Wally, can sleep through anything, but I wonder if a Christian music convention counts. Maybe Wally will take this opportunity to practice his singing so he can go on tour with Emmitt and I.

Stay safe down there and as you continue your travels. I'm keeping you guys in my thoughts and you blaze the trail to Florida!

Stubby xoxo

Sequoia & Petunia said...

Wow is all we can say. Its snowing here in VA now but luckliy no ice, yet.

We hope you make it through in the next few days, stay safe!

Winston (smilingpug) said...

Heather and Wally just sit tight til the storm passes. We dont want you travelling in those dangerous conditions. Wally and you are way too important to have something happen to you both. Take advantage, lounge lounge and lounge (it is what pugs do best isn't it?). We pray for your safe arrival in Florida! Yes Winston had a fabulous birthday another year older but still as cute as ever!

Lise and WInston

Jennifer Sneed said...

You guys be safe!!! The snow is all the way down to NC. We will keep you in our thoughts and prayers.


Jen and Maxwell

dw said...

Oh, my, I've driven that stretch between Nashville and Chattanooga and it's my least favorite part of the drive from Chicago to Florida. Please stay safe! Thanks for the check in!!

Stella, Gunther & Betty said...

Beet juice?! For cryin' out loud, never herd of such a thing..

So glad to hear you and Walter are hunkered down and safe. Just keep the sharp objects locked away in case you lose your mind listening to all those guitar playin' teens! lol!

We're so excited for you!


Tweedles -- that's me said...

We have thought about you all day today "riding out the storm".
be safe our friends!

agent99 said...

Sheesh! If an Escalade SUV can't stop Wally, I doubt a freak snow and ice storm can. That said, I do hope you have packed for him a pug sized Hawaiian shirt and snorkle mask for when he arrives at his final destination!
Travel safe, we'll be thinking of you!!

Gen & the Foo!

BRUTUS said...

Hope you are maybe in FL by now? What a storm you got stuck in!! I have friends in Charlotte NC and I guess life as they know it stopped there too (all businesses closed, even the mall and McDonalds!). We'll look forward to hearing the news of your safe arrival! Oh, it could have been worse - like a punk rock festival at the hotel!!

Michelle & Brutus

Anonymous said...

oh good god! Isn't that nuts what's happening in the southern states? and i know in vancouver people here don't know what squat about driving on snow and ice, but beet juice???? haha sorry but wow lol

I think i may go nuts with kids playing music alround me.
Hmm.. ways to keep Wally busy.. Take him for a walk in a mall? With his little booty on? why not :)

good luck!

Melissa and Emmitt said...

hi heather and walter!
oh thank you so much for the update and for being such smart travelers!

I am so glad you are camped out safe and sound until the conditions improve.

You two are so good at showing the world that it is the journey not the destination that is important!

melissa and emmitt

Harry Pugalicious said...

Oh no!!!! What are the chances of that happening? We're glad you found a shelter from the storm and hope the rest of your trip is pleasant and drama-free!

Watch out in Miami though... Super Bowl week. Who Dat!

Dutch the Pug said...

Stay safe you two!