It is always great to be home.
The meeting I recently attended, the cause of my temporary (err) distraction, was near Louisville, Kentucky. Upon my arrival at the Louisville Airport, I drove a rental car to the location of the meeting, a lovely retreat center in southern Indiana, aptly named Wooded Glen. This rural location was most charming. While the trees around the center were not yet blooming, the birds flocked around various feeders. I saw red-breasted nuthatches, red-headed woodpeckers, a pileated woodpecker, downy woodpeckers, cardinals, tufted titmice and robins. Alas, no camera! And, I just remembered, I saw a small flock of wild turkeys walking through the woods.
With meetings from first thing in the morning until evening, birdwatching was the only respite from hours and hours of work and words.
One additional thing we did was eat. The retreat center provided us with three full meals each day, and snacks at every break, AND cookies and milk at night! Thank goodness (for my . . .ahem. . .girlish figure) I didn't have to stay there longer than three days.
Now to the title of this blog, and to the most exciting and nerve-wracking part of the whole time. I left EARLY Saturday morning, leaving around 5:15 a.m. to get to the airport. It was SUPER foggy at that time of the morning, so as I inched down the road leaving Wooded Glen, I could see only as far as the headlight beam in front of me. Having only driven into the place, and not out, I did not know the road. And there were no white lines painted along the side of the ONE lane road, with dirt shoulders. I was surprised to come to several Ys in the road requiring me to choose one direction or another. I made my first choice, no problem.
At the second Y, I went right--and after traveling about 100 feet, I saw a CREEK directly in front of me, with no barrier or anything to stop me from going in. Except for the fact that I was driving so slowly. I then proceeded to try to back up in the fog. Ever done that? It can't be done. So I decided I had to turn around. First, I got out, tested the ground along side the road to make sure I wouldn't end up stuck in mud, then maneuvered back and forth until I got turned around. I finally got back to the Y choice, took the left branch and knew I was on the right track when I crossed the covered bridge that I had crossed when I first drove onto the retreat grounds.
I added the map to help make graphic my adventuresome trip--the pink route is what I was supposed to drive--from the X to the main road, upper left. The first yellow route is the one I made the correct choice--i.e. I did not take. The second yellow route, near the left hand side of the map, is the one I mistakenly took, and ended up staring at the creek.
While the rest of the trip was still foggy, there was nothing else quite so nerve wracking as that first part.
Out of curiosity, upon my return, I typed "driving in fog" into Google to see what results I would get. Here's what I learned: "Driving in heavy fog is like driving with a blindfold on. Statistically it's the most dangerous driving hazard in existence. No matter how important the trip is, it's not worth gambling your life. By far the safest thing to do if you run into fog is to move well off the road and wait for the fog to lift." For tips on what to do if you must drive, you can go here.
As I said at the outset, home again, home again.
Photo of car in fog from http://www.highways.gov.uk/roads/projects/9082.aspx