Monday, January 11, 2010

The Adventure Continues.........A Little Witching Hour

The Adventure Begins

At first when I got back onto the freeway after leaving the Hitchcockian station I was so relieved to be away from that place I actually had a little energy. Maybe it was adrenaline caused by the fear that triggered it. Whatever it was it served me well. I managed to drive a ways before the dreaded sleep monsters tried to get me..........or whatever they were.

Nothing could stave my sleep deprived state off for long. Soon the familiar symptoms began moving back in one m. Fog took over my brain and my eyelids became laden with lead. I struggled to keep my head clear and me and my horses safe.

The road was closing in on me. No longer did I see freeway around me. Instead the darkness seemed to be walls wrapped around my rig. The night's blackness had swallowed me up whole. Following what I could see of white lines just ahead, my rig wound its way down the steep mountain pass. Brief reflections of headlights off the trees were my only proof there was anything out there at all. But the scene portrayed in my mind from those brief glimpses was more like some witching hour tale than a night drive on Interstate 5.

Except for those little white lines the road was gone. I had no sense of other lanes or shoulders even though I know they must have been there. Occasionally I would hit that ditch designed to keep drivers like me awake. The rude intrusion of the noise jarring me into consciousness.

As if fighting sleep was not bad enough, along a particularly steep winding stretch I was assaulted. A barrage of strange forms swooped by me and then disappeared in the darkness only to be followed by more...... and then more of the dark creatures.

Some purple, some blue and some black, they descended upon me in waves. Coming from behind, they seemed to dive towards my rig as they flew at my windows, while others descended from overhead and down over my windshield. All of them screaming off into the darkness in front of me dancing an evil dance, leading the way into the engulfing darkness.

I heard no sound but Kenny Rogers still playing there in the background. Yet their message seemed clear. They were coming for me. I took brief note of this warning and then shook it off. I was content in the belief I was safe despite this attempt to terrify me. I could and WOULD make it to the rest stop.

These assaults happened a couple of times before the off ramp for the rest stop was reached. I sighed in relief at the prospect of finally getting some sleep as I signaled my intention to exit.

Only after pulling my rig onto the exit itself did I wonder if I was making yet another mistake. The entrance to this rest stop did not look like any I'd ever seen before. A sign stated the rest stop was in a state park and I wondered how did that work.

As I pulled on down into yet another twisting dark road tightly enclosed in tall trees, those dark forms descended on me again. Was I driving into a place of rest or was something darker waiting for me? With no other way to go, I continued on down this one way road not knowing what lay ahead for me.

My only consolation at this point was what I could see in the darkness did indeed look like what I would expect of a state park in the mountains. Had I been clearer in my head, that probably would not have been any comfort. Many a bad thing has happened in a state park. For now, I just kept creeping forward looking for any signs of the rest stop I so desperately needed.

Finally I spotted signs designating which way to go for rigs such as mine. I veered off to the right as directed expecting to come to a parking lot. Instead I just kept creeping forward, winding around into the darkness until I came to what looked like a wider arched lane than the one I was currently travelling.

I pulled in as directed before I saw what really lay in front of me. There was no angled parking lot lining the rigs up parallel to each other in one long row as one usually sees in rest stops. Instead the rigs were pulled in head to tail hugging both sides of this lane.

One thoughtless trucker had tried to pull down the middle of this lane despite how tight it looked. Now right in front of me were three semis wedged together side by side underneath the tall trees STUCK with less than six inches between them. With the curve of this lane there was no way that truck was moving another inch. AND now I was stuck TOO!. Another truck had just pulled in behind me. He'd been following me in a darkness so thick I didn't even know he was there.

To be continued.....................

Am I Ever Gonna Sleep

Visit Blog Village and vote daily for this blog Here They are now measuring the rankings by votes out, so if you find my blog on the site, please click that link too to improve my rankings. TY


  1. Yikes ! I have been that tired! when you start to see things coming out at you , for me they are ofter light or white,still unerving as hell!

  2. So dangerous to be on the road that tired. More accidents are caused by tired people than by drunks.

    Glad you lived to blog about it.

  3. What a nightmare! I can't wait to hear how you got out of this one.

  4. Oh no. Stuck! Your poor horses. At least you can get out and stretch, and hopefully sleep.

  5. I'm with Breathe--- I'm glad you lived to blog about this!

    I learned my lesson about driving while sleepy on a Christmas morning a couple of years ago. It was about 3 am and I was doing a quick drive from Bakersfield to Orange County (less than 3 hours). I'd been up for more than 24 hours and I was struggling to stay awake, windows down, radio blasting, etc. Stupidly, I also had cruise control on (a very dumb thing to do when driving sleepy.)

    I decided to change lanes, and as I passed over the little bumps between the two lanes I noticed that my truck didn't make that Ba-DUMP noise it usually made when going over the lane dividers/bumps.

    Something about how odd that was woke me up. I didn't even realize I was asleep--- I literally went to sleep with my eyes open. When my eyes started seeing what was actually in front of me, instead of what I was dreaming was in front of me, I was about 3/10 of a second away from slamming into the center divider of the 405 Freeway. I had gone to change lanes and fell asleep while leaning on the wheel. I grabbed the wheel and jerked it and ended up spinning back and forth across all 5 lanes of traffic trying to get control of my truck. If there had been ANYBODY else on the road there would have been a serious accident. It scared me bad enough I stayed awake for the rest of the drive. I still can't believe that I fell asleep with my eyes open. I thought I was safe so long as my eyelids didn't close.

    Please be careful driving that sleepy. It's been proven time and again that you would have been better off tossing back a couple of shots of whiskey and climbing behind the wheel than driving that sleepy.

    I'm so glad you lived to tell the tale!

  6. fernvalley, Yikes! is right. Not a good situation for sure.

    Breathe, I know that you are right. It wasn't until I hit that point that I realized how tired I was. Then there wasn't a safe place for me to turn off. Not a situation I ever want to be in again.

    jennybean, sometimes it did seem like a nightmare too.

    Molly, stuck was the last place I expected to be. I guess it just goes to show you never know what life may have in store for you.

    Becky, I'm pretty sure I learned my lesson on this return trip. That second day was a real killer. I'm hoping my next trip to nationals to travel with people who stop each night. Drving straight through is not something I want to do again.