I had the scariest experience last night. After midnight, I declined an offer to be dropped off by a friend, the girls night out "designated driver" volunteer. The thought of leaving the car to pick it up the next day in the parking lot was not appealing. My home is also 20 kilometers out of their way. We said our goodbyes and I carried on.
|Source - Dubai This Morning|
Alone I drove on Dubai Bypass Road, an empty desert highway with semi trailers and lorries to keep me company. It's a very long highway with six lanes on each side. Nothing can be seen on either side but the desert. I'm used to driving on this road at night at a legal speed limit of 120 km / hr (75 miles per hour) sometimes 140 km / hr ( 87 miles per hour).
As I was contemplating a future decision I needed to make, I started a dialogue in my head. To my surprise, a dense fog descended. I felt like someone threw a giant blanket over me. Zero visibility. I drew a heavy breath and focused all of my concentration on the road. I couldn't see the white lines anymore. I could hardly see the front hood of my vehicle. Thick white smoke swallowed me up. I prayed as I struggled to keep calm. I slowed down.
For a moment,I felt something bad was going to happen and that feeling was not foreign to me as the fear of my past car accident presented itself. I turned the fog lights on, worried that a speeding car will crash behind me, I gradually slowed down even more preparing to leave the road. I shrugged the thought aside and checked for incoming cars and trucks behind me.
I couldn't see anything. I felt like crying. I had no idea where I was on that highway. I knew it was extremely dangerous should I continue, fully aware that if I miss my turn off,I would be driving for another 22 kilometers before I can make a U-turn.
There was no way I can keep on driving blindly, so I slowly switched lanes, smoothly pulling to the right. I parked at the hazard lane behind a signage panel with a foreign name unfamiliar to me.
I stayed there for a while hoping that the fog burns off, trucks pulling up at the side of the road one by one behind me. Apparently the other drivers were also suffering from this temporary blindness from the fog. My mobile phone had low battery and my husband didn't pick up when I called him to ask for directions. I stayed there at the side of the road, relieved that the tank had enough gas to keep me there for a little while longer.
The parked trucks started to move one by one. I just wanted to go home. I followed a trailer and kept him close in front of me making use of his lights to guide me, knowing that while this truck is moving, we're okay.
The relief I felt when I recognized the striped concrete blocks at the side of the road near our place was such a blessing. The next goal was to be able to reach the gate. The dirt road had no street lamp. By mistake, I could just easily fall into a deep ditch of sand. I cursed as I almost missed the road. I'm thankful there were no other cars that night or I'm sure I would have crashed into them already. It was still zero visibility.
I was elated when I saw the guard house light softly beaming. Maybe I'm overreacting a tad, but I felt it was a miracle I made it home.
Did you have any encounter with the fog?
What did you do?