Jul 22, 2019

When driving to San Jose goes wrong

Yesterday, I drove my girlfriend to San Jose for a medical procedure. Normally, that news isn’t blogworthy, but the ride there and back certainly is.

It was bad from the start. First, the entrance to Highway 99 at Golden State Ave. was blocked off due to construction, frustrating me to no end. (I have a slight, slight, case of road rage).

But overall, the drive to San Jose, after this first minor blip, was relatively easy. We got to the hospital, checked in and were out within 30 minutes. We thought about going to the beach but decided that we wanted to get home sooner or later. Turns out it didn’t matter what time we wanted to get home—the traffic gods would decide for us.

Immediately after getting on the 101-South we hit traffic—bad traffic. Traffic so bad we went about six miles in two hours. (This is what I was saying in the car). A fellow traveler on the freeway told us that a wax tanker spilled a few miles ahead of us and that traffic would be backed up for a while. Needing gas, we took the shoulder to the nearest exit and arrived safe and sound at a gas station.

The rest of the trip would be fine; just deal with some traffic and then we’ll be home, no big deal—or so we thought.

While driving through windy Pacheco Pass Highway, we saw two cars that were in an accident up ahead. The car in front of us decided it would be a good idea to slam on its brakes, even though both vehicles that had crashed were on the side of the road. It took Herculean efforts by my right foot (and probably some divine intervention) to not rear-end that car; thank God no one was behind us.

Needless to say, my hands were locked at ten-and-two the rest of the way.

At approximately 11 p.m., roughly six and a half hours after we left, we arrived at my house, where her car was waiting. All I could think is, we’re there. (Go to 5:52 on this link to see what I’m talking about.)

The lesson, as always: Don’t get in a car accident while driving your tanker that’s carrying wax.

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