West: Thank goodness we missed Atlanta

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Well, it's been a wild winter thus far. We've been lucky in Cannon County. Sure, it has been cold . record cold.Cold I can take. Heck, I've even been to some of the colder spots of the world.

All it means is putting on some extra layers including some good, old insulated underwear. No, no long-handles for me. I can't comprehend the idea of a button-up flap. And red's never been my color. (It makes me look like my blood pressure is high.) Toss in some wool socks and a warm undershirt (doesn't matter what style or what color) and I've got it made as long as I've got a hat and gloves.

Heck, I even welcome ice and snow. It's fun for a change.

But I can't imagine what it was like in Atlanta with three or four inches of snow and ice.

To begin with, the interstates in Atlanta and I don't get along too well.

Once upon a time, you could hit Atlanta at off hours and have no problems. You could just breeze through, but that was years ago.

Now Atlanta is pretty much a disaster day or night or at least it is for me.

That probably has something to do with a trip back from Florida a few years ago.

First of all, you can't creep through Atlanta. You've got to keep your speed up or get run over.

Well, I was keeping my speed up and was just passing the Coca-Cola complex when about three lanes worth of traffic started slipping, sliding, screeching. I was to later find out that a car up front had run out of gas and was dead right in the middle of the Interstate.

Yep, I tried to stop, but instead nicked a van that was busy switching lanes. Yep, and I got hit in the "rear-end." It quickly became one of those multi-lane accidents that are so popular in Atlanta.

Fortunately, no one was hurt. In fact, our air bag didn't even deploy. The police were on the scene immediately. It could have been much worse.

Naturally, being the only Tennessee car involved, I got the blame. So it goes.

Ever since, I have had a little problem with driving through Atlanta even with a navigator and a computerized navigation system.

But in my worst dreams, I can't imagine what it would be like to face Atlanta traffic with snow and ice on the road.
Those poor folks!

What’s that crazy, twisting, turning section of Interstate in Atlanta called? Let’s see ... Spaghetti Junction ... that’s it. Driving around that nutty junction is bad enough, but when you see an aerial view of it, it looks absolutely crazy. (You should look it up on the Internet.)

Just the thought of spending hours - the entire night - stuck on the Spaghetti Junction is downright scary.
There were at least two school buses loaded with kids were left overnight on the super highway. It might have been great fun for the kids, but can you imagine what it was like for the parents? One couple was so concerned about their child that the husband walked six miles in the snow to go to his school where the child was safe and sound.

Whew! Those photos showing endless lines of traffic stopped on the Interstate were more than enough for me.

Enough of that..

So where am I going on my next long weekend?

Yep, Atlanta, but I won't be driving. Paid my dues on that responsibility.

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Mike West
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