Thursday, December 2, 2010
What if there’s nothing, just the motorway with the cars going round and round and round and round, never stopping, forever.
I was intending to pop down to the cottage for a meeting with the chimney sweep - best to get it sorted out before the winter really starts, I thought!
I set off on Tuesday thinking that, although snow was predicted, it did not seem as if it would amount too much.
Eight hours later, when I finally got back home, I bitterly regretted my naivety.
It was the dramatic change in the traffic situation that really caught me out. Until I hit the M25 the journey was taking no longer than usual and the snow seemed no more than a flurry.
As soon as I got onto the M25, however, it was clear that the motorway was at a standstill and that there was no way I was going to get to Lydd. If I could have turned around then all would have been fine - however, jack-knifed lorries and the sheer volume of traffic at every junction made this virtually impossible. I spent the next 6 hours crawling along the M25 until I finally managed to slip and slide my way off and on again to the M25 going back to London!
Perhaps if I had got self-replicating fuel, muscle stimulants for exercise, a chemical toilet out the back, and been able to recycle all waste products as food I could have survived indefinitely!
The morale of this, I suppose, is not to take Britain's normally mild climate for granted and also the importance of holiday insurance - if the cottage had been booked this week I doubt if visitors would have made it - even with four wheel drive!