I know I need to do a long, deep post about our mission trip to China. Oh how my heart has so many emotions about our trip! I want to write all about it.
But today, in a mini-jet-lag-fog (it actually hasn't been bad at all this time around!), I want to do a post that will come easily.
A memory of 20 years ago: The Blizzard of '93
It makes me smile just thinking about it.
I was a 22 year old teacher in Mobile, AL. And I was IN LOVE. He was romantic, good-looking, and everything I ever dreamed of in a man. My Robbie. :)
But Robbie was living in Birmingham with his sister. He had just got his first job out of college at Drummond Coal. He was a disastrous FOUR hours away! How could I survive?
He had planned to drive down to Mobile and come see me on this date, 20 years ago. I couldn't WAIT! But at the last minute, he suggested that I drive up to see him, because there was a chance of some snow. We could be "snow-bunnies in love". It would be perfect!
So I switched gears, packed my bags, and Friday afternoon after school let out, I hit the road.
About the time I hit Clanton, the snow started coming down pretty good. It was beautiful! I couldn't stop grinning as I cruised along in my light blue Mazda 626. It was gonna be so fun to play in the snow with the love of my life!
But soon, my grinning stopped. I realized the snow was beginning to look SCARY instead of beautiful. I could barely see in front of my bumper. The road was covered. It was windy. And I realized.....this was not just gonna be some snow for us to play in. This was gonna be BAD.
Keep in mind, this is 1993. No cell phones. I could make out two tail lights in front of me and decided I would just follow in the tire tracks of an 18 wheeler. I didn't know if I was even still on the interstate, I just followed the tracks.
Next thing I knew, I had followed those tracks to a gas station. I didn't even realize I had got off the interstate! It was the Jemison exit on I-65. I was about 45 miles from Birmingham, and there was NO WAY I could go any further.
I got out of my car and pushed my way in the wind and snow to the pay phone outside. I was able to get in touch with Rob to tell him where I was. I told him I could not go any farther. He said he would figure out something and try to come get me. So at this point, I could do nothing else but go in the gas station with the rest of the handful of crazy people who were out in this weather. I don't remember any names or faces of the people I met, but I do remember making fast friends with all of them. We were all in this together!
It's a blur, 20 years later. But I do remember around 11:00 Rob showed up with a friend who had a 4 wheel drive truck. Terry Wright. I will NEVER be able to re-pay that man. (...and believe me, even to this day, he pretends to hide from me when he sees me!)
By this time of night, the blizzard is really full-speed. Blinding snow. No roads visible. And they came and rescued me! It took us about 4 hours to get back to Birmingham. At one point, we saw a Siberian Husky running along side the interstate as if he was screaming "YES!!!!! I'm HOME!!!!! ALASKA AT LAST!!!!!!"
We pulled into Rob's sister's home in Cahaba Heights in the wee hours of Saturday morning. We were freezing. We were exhausted. Still though, in my early twenties maturity, I had no regrets of this trip! Jill's house had no power by this time. Everyone was snuggled in the living room by the fireplace....waiting on Rob and his crazy girlfriend who had to be rescued in a blizzard. Troy and Jill were so relieved and Jill was in tears when we arrived. They had been so worried and said they had
been praying and praying for us.
No one got much sleep that night. But the next day, when the sun came out and we saw how much snow we had, the fears and worries of the night before quickly dissipated, and we played ALL DAY in the snow! Sunday came, and I needed to head back to Mobile so I could teach Monday. But the roads were still impassable. So UNFORTUNATELY (ha ha...remember I am crazy in love) I had to stay until Monday!
I don't think we have shared this story with our parents, even to this day. So Mom, Nanny, & Papa...sorry! We didn't want to worry you, I guess! Or we were afraid we might get in trouble! Anyway, it makes for a great story in our history together. And even better, it was this weekend that we had the "marriage" talk. And just a few weeks later, on Easter weekend, we were engaged! (Yes, I totally drove in a blizzard to see a boy that I wasn't even engaged to! But I knew he was gonna be mine!!!!!) I would do it all o.ver again, Rob Ferrill! You are worth risking my life (and yours and Terry's lives) in a blizzard for! :)