My mom flew in this week to attend a Beth Moore conference in Colorado Springs. We had our hotel reservations cancelled. Thankfully I booked through Expedia, which I never do. But because I did, they were able to find us another one. And the one we ended up getting what phenomenal. Excellent customer service, beautiful room, fantastic full hot breakfast and a gorgeous indoor pool. But, that is not where the story starts.
The girls going to the conference show up at my house and we head down to the gas station to fill up. Grabbing gas, the ladies and I gear up and start our trip two and a half hours south into the heart of the wildfires terrorizing Colorado. The traffic through Denver was horrendous. What normally took an hour and a half, took four hours. It was bumper to bumper traffic that inched forward at a snail's pace. We passed several accidents. One that was a semi trailer that was jackknifed and on it's side on the shoulder of the four lane highway. One of our friends had decided not to go a few short days before because she said she was not at peace with it. And that was fresh on my mind. There was a lot of uncertainty surrounding this whole trip. The fires raging through all of Colorado are devastating. Smoke and ash cover our town on the Colorado/Wyoming border. Thousands of people have been evacuated all over the state. The worst fire in Colorado history is burning Colorado Springs. Right where we were headed. I have friends in the Springs and I watch their Facebook page and just cry at the devastation that I see. Homes going up in flames, trees being burned, the mountains glowing with an eerie glow.
We finally manage to get passed all the accidents and the traffic begins to whiz all around. We are in the left middle lane and heading towards a small hill. Suddenly my truck RPMs die and the power from my 3/4 ton Suburban is dead on the middle of one of the busiest highways I've ever been on. I tried to guide my slowing vehicle to one of the shoulders without any sort of success. Watching cars, trucks and semis in my rear view mirror flying at break neck speeds right towards my truck gave me a heart attack. I have three other ladies in my truck, one being my mom. And I am pregnant. Everything in my heart is screaming. My face is instantly hot and the adrenaline is rocketing through my veins. Being a prior service cop, my first thought is to hand off the drivers seat to someone else and direct traffic while the other two ladies push my truck to the shoulder. But I am pregnant. And my history with pregnancy loss makes my reactions be extremely protective. I have literally just passed the threshold of knowing that my baby is going to make it to delivery in seven months. There is absolutely no way that I could even attempt to open my door with all the traffic. Out of nowhere a Suburban towing a trailer whips around us and stops right in front of us and backs up to close to hitting my bumper. A small Mexican man jumps out and rushes to my window. He has to nearly scream at my to be heard over the sound of the traffic. He tells me that he's going to tow me to the shoulder. Everything in me is screaming with the protective nature of a mom. All I can think about is my friend and her choice to not come, my baby and someone hitting us from behind. Watching the cars again in my rear view mirror is terrorizing. Watching the fear in my friends faces, I try to start the truck while its in neutral as our Good Samaritan attempts us to tow us. The tow strap snaps in half. His trailer shakes as he lurches forward. He's halfway into the next lane when a police officer pulls up behind us. She turns her lights on and gets all those crazy drivers to give us some space. Our Good Samaritan gets another tow strap. The truck finally starts and I was able to help the towing journey. He finally gets us to the shoulder. I was able to breathe a sign of relief. We are no longer directly in harm's way.
He tells us to follow him to the next exit and he'll help us figure out what's wrong. My truck is started and I attempt to pull away. Once again the RPMs die and I am dead in the water. He runs back and asks if he can start my truck and he jumps in. He tells me he thinks it's bad gas. Fantastic. He asks if someone can drive a trailer, and my friend and my mom jump out and get into his truck. We pull out into traffic and head down the highway. My truck makes it to his exit. Through all of it, he's asking if I am on drugs because apparently my truck decides that she's fine and makes me look absolutely crazy. If I didn't have all the other ladies telling him that it was indeed acting up, then I am pretty sure that he would have continued to think that I was high. Once we get down to his exit, he puts some gas cleaner additive in and my truck is just fine. All the girls and I are cracking jokes. As we are pulling away to jump back on the highway Good Samaritan, flags us down and asks if we like China. We all were stunned. What is he talking about?!!? The country, the food the dishes.... He grabs a box from his truck and puts it in the back of my truck. Its filled with priceless China. Okay..... this guy literally just saved our lives in the middle in the highway and then just gave us a gift of China.... I was baffled. What in the world is God doing????? He ended up following us all the way down to the Springs traffic backed up a bit again, and he pulled up next to us to inform we screaming through open windows that water is pouring out of my exhaust, which apparently means we have bad gas. He followed us all the way down to our exit. We waved as we left the highway.
We actually get into our hotel room and get to the conference about an hour after we were supposed to, but everything worked out great! Our room was fabulous, we were able to get great parking, and was able to get all four of us into reserved seating instead of just two of us. There were so many more little blessings that made their way to us that it blew my mind!
Here is all of us outside the conference. We could literally watch plumes of smoke come off the mountain. All the white clouds behind us are actually smoke clouds.