Yesterday I left home in the dark to make a three-hour trip on a snow-covered highway. I was confident. I was confident because I had three factors in my favour:
1. Studded tires.
2. Over a half century of driving experience.
3. And most of that experience on winter highways.
So I was not surprised I was catching up to and passing traffic. I drive a little Kia four-banger, front-wheel drive, and I was passing transports left and right. Okay. I passed only on the left. I didn’t drive on the shoulder. I am adventurous but not suicidal. And . . . I did not exceed the posted speed limit.
Some of those transport drivers might have only thirty or forty years of experience. And most of that experience would not be on winter roads – roads that can change from gleaming damply in the headlights to black ice to snow-packed and snow-choked, all in the space of an hour.
Some of those drivers might have only ten or twenty years’ experience. Those are the real babes in the woods. Here in the north woods, we pass them all the time . . . in the ditch. Where they’re not going anywhere.
I caught up to an SUV that was tailgating a transport. It was struggling. It had only four-wheel drive and eight cylinders and several hundred horses to propel it along, so I passed it. And the transport. And then . . .
The SUV followed me. It actually sped up and tailgated me for the next hour. Was it pride that motivated it? Or just plain good sense.
Anyway, I guided it to safety.
And yes, I did return home last night . . . in the dark.