Sunday, January 23, 2011
Snow on the Road
(Moving slow on the highway through snow and slush)
I don’t like it. It makes me tense. Driving in the snow, I hold the steering wheel with white knuckles. It wasn’t always this way. But, after a rollover car accident on the interstate two years ago, I’ve lost my confidence driving in the snow.
Yesterday, I was the passenger, but I still didn’t like it. Snow removal in Korea is sub-par to say the least. As we hit the road after about two or three inches of snowfall, my husband remarked that this is what it must be like after it snows in Texas. No one really knows how to drive in the snow. Drivers were going at a snails pace. Considering the typically frenetic drivers in Korea, that was okay with me. Especially since drivers continued to run red lights as is their habit.
The true hazard is that the roads are not pre-treated. In the States, a forecast of snow means you see the plow trucks out laying brine or salt on the roads. Here, the snow quickly collected on the roads with nothing to stop it. Even after the snowfall, it is rare to see a snow plow. Yes, the city has them. How many I don’t know. All I can say is, it’s not enough.
Thankfully it hasn’t snowed often this winter. The lack of snow removal on the roads is only trumped by what happens to the sidewalks. No one shovels. Soon the snow is packed down by pedestrians and turns to sheets of ice. Walking to work becomes an exercise in balance as I say silent prayers that I not fall and break a limb. That ice can stick around for weeks as temperatures rarely reach above freezing in the winter months.
The cold I can handle. We bundle up so that only our eyes are showing as we walk to work. Layers keep those biting temperatures at bay. However, I can do without the snow. It wasn’t always this way, but a beautiful snowfall no longer means a snow day, sledding and maybe some hot chocolate. Too bad, I could use a snow day!