...especially on rainy roads in normally dry Southern California. Sometimes they involve a lot of cars. If you're truly unfortunate, one of those cars is yours.
Guess who was truly unfortunate on Monday afternoon?
My family spent the President's Day weekend at my mother-in-law's, and started the drive home after lunch on Monday. The weather was iffy, so we wanted to allow extra time for traffic tie-ups. Even so, we weren't doing too badly time-wise when we reached the San Fernando Valley. We drove through rainy patches, overcast areas, spots of sunshine, and some places that seemed to mix them all, like the stretch of the 101 Freeway through Calabasas.
Suddenly, cars were slowing down and switching lanes abruptly, and our attempt to take evasive action was unsuccessful. We rear-ended another car, the airbags deployed, and Tall Paul steered us off the road to the right-hand shoulder, where we came to a stop. The kids were scared and we were stunned, but none of us were seriously hurt - except for the car.
Tuesday was a recovery day at home. We are all nursing bruises. The Boy seems to have bounced back pretty well - it helps to be nine, I guess; Tall Paul, Tall Girl, and I are all still sore; and I seem to have injured my right-hand pinky finger, of all things.
We are expecting that the car will be given the last rites and we'll have to replace it under less-than-ideal circumstances, but it's in the insurance company's hands right now.
The accident closed down the north 101 Freeway for nearly an hour at what would have been the afternoon rush hour if it hadn't been President's Day, and at least a dozen cars were involved. As far as we can tell, our car was one of the last in the chain, and was able to get out of the main crush; there were at least six or seven cars piled into each other in the #2 lane, and the rest were dispersed along the right-hand shoulder and the center median. If this link still works, you can see the local news report:
Look closely and you'll see my husband on the shoulder, taking pictures of the damage to his car.
I'm glad we're all OK, and especially glad our dog didn't make this trip with us. With luck, in a few more days it won't hurt to move our shoulders, and I'm hoping for much less excitement this coming weekend.