Thursday, December 15, 2011

A White California Christmas?

As I was driving home from the store Thursday afternoon, the ominous clouds in the horizon towards the north didn’t take long to unleash something totally unexpected. The initial drops of rain were quickly followed by thick torrents of ice. A hailstorm in Long Beach!? It has happened before though rarely, but not in my part of town. While at a stop light, I feared that the heavy drops would crack my windshield. Already the driver of the car beside me was taking a video with his cell phone. Turning into my block, I had to stop to car to take out my cell phone to take my own video. The street was blanketed with ice by this time and with the thickness of the ice droplets, it was difficult to drive because you can barely see anything ahead of you in addition to the slipping and sliding. A truck ahead of me had to stop completely so I had to drive around him to get to the alley where my garage was. I took a second video showing the ice on my car and on the street, including thunder and lightning. When I tried driving the car into the garage, all it did was spin it’s wheels on the icy pavement and I had to back up a couple of times before I was finally able to get in the garage. As I walked the few short steps back home, I had to tread very, very slowly to keep myself from slipping (me with the bad ankles, bad balance, and poor proprioception). In the meantime I saw my neighbor going towards the parking lot to take his own video of the spectacle. Now, I’ve been caught in a hailstorm while running years ago, but nothing of the magnitude that happened in the late afternoon of December 15th. The sky had fallen and heavily. It wouldn’t surprise me if the snowflakes come soon.

Here's an update to last night's hail storm. The morning after, the ice on the ground still hasn't melted.

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