Tuesday, July 2, 2013

oh haiiiiil no

On Saturday as I was driving back from a baby shower with Elden, we got caught in a hail storm on I-77.

Things progressed from dark clouds to torrential downpour rather quickly. At this point several cars pulled to the brim and put on their hazards. I put my hazards on as well, but continued slowly on my way home. Before I knew it, hail started flying.

So the thing about hail? It's basically like nature's bullet, determined to kill your sanity and you first-born. It quickly progressed from the size of a pea to the size of a quarter. I kept looking out my driver's side window convinced I would see softball-sized hail on the road because of how loud it was in that metal death trap. In my state of panic, I did the only rational thing possible: I drove with one hand under my windshield, palm up, as if I could magically stop it from shattering at any given moment. I would then switch hands and reach my right arm back behind me to place it over Elden's head, as if I could shield him from flying hail bullet glass should it come to that. My son? Didn't even care. He obviously had no frame of reference for what was happening, but not once did my panic or the sound of three trillion snare drummers on our car phase him. He most certainly gets that from his dad.
the vicious hail bullets at home, approximately 20 minutes post-storm
And then? I called Jon. Crying, freaking out, unsure of what to do. I'm pretty sure I pulled over to the shoulder and got back on the highway about 3 times. At one point a ton of leaves and twigs began flying out of nowhere so I was convinced I was in the middle of a tornado. Jon was trying to keep me calm while I was all, "WHAT DO WE DO? They say to get out of your car in a tornado and get in a ditch but the sky is throwing hail bullets and I don't want to take my chances with those, either!! WE'RE GOING TO DIEEEEE!" At another point, I had crawled into the backseat with Elden and was about to unbuckle him to bring him in the center in case the glass did break but my better judgment prevailed and I realized that it was far more dangerous for him in the event another car hit us.

Without realizing it, I went to get off at the very next exit (per Jon's advice) only to discover that it was our exit, a mere 4 minutes from our house. It also (finally) stopped hailing right around this time. When I pulled into our drive it didn't take long for me to notice the large hail in our grass. We had a roofer come over tonight to see if anything serious went awry (not serious but not mild either--we have damage to our roof, gutters, window air conditioning units, and window screens) so we filed a claim with our insurance company to see if they'll cover any repairs. I am so thankful that no glass broke and that we got home unscathed, and if I learned anything, it's that I don't do crises well.

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