A Blizzard in the South

As a child, I always liked palm trees and sunshine. I dreamed of living in a climate where I could be outside all year round and swim as much I wanted. I wanted to live in Florida more than anything. It was 1993 and my family planned a trip to Florida for Spring Break. I was so excited. I thought that I would experience warm weather and escape the cool, Indiana March.

My mom, dad, and two brothers packed their bags in a van my mom had rented to drive down. My parents had some reservations about taking this trip because they heard a storm was coming in. We headed south anyway.

By the time, we crossed the Kentucky border, we heard that some interstates were closing due to the storm. We were a little alarmed by this, but decided to continue traveling. We stayed in a hotel in Kentucky and thought that things might improve by morning. We got up the next morning and headed out. The roads were clear enough where my older brother could drive.

By the time we got to Birmingham, Alabama. Things made a turn for the worse. In Birmingham, they were clearing the roads with tractors. The roads were starting to get icy. My family looked for a hotel room, but could not find any open. We had to get off the road. My brother was driving on a sheet of ice. My brother found a truck stop to pull off. We would sleep there for the night. My brother had to stay awake all night to start the van so we could keep warm. I didn’t sleep much that night. I just prayed that we would get out of the situation.

The next morning, the roads were clear enough to drive safely to Florida. We made it to Pensacola, FL and found a nice hotel. I was so happy to sleep in a bed and be able to take a shower. We headed to Silver Springs near Ocala, FL the next day. In the end, we actually had an enjoyable experience. We did not have any problems making it home. We were left with some frightening memories that we would never forget.

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