Monday, February 3, 2014

Mr. Hendry Makes His Way Home

Elementary Teacher Ben Hendry emailed me last Wednesday morning as we were all reeling from the effects of "Snow Jam 2014." He shared with me a letter he had sent to family and friends--I thought it would be a good beginning to all of the stories of peril and heroism we will all share in the coming days.

Dear Friends,

I hope all of you were able to return home quickly and safely yesterday. I actually feel lucky that my typical 10 mile, 18 minute commute to Sandy Springs was "only" 7 hours. This includes parking in a neighborhood off Spalding Dr/Chamblee-Dunwoody Rd around 7pm, walking about one mile to my mom's house off Peachtree-Dunwoody to visit, eat, get warm, and borrow better mittens, walking a mile to the MARTA North Springs station, riding south one stop, and walking the final 1.7 miles home to arrive at 9:20. I imagine some readers are wondering if that description is setting up a word problem, such as "How far did Mr. Hendry walk?", or "What time did he leave school?" but I leave that up to you.

My trip included helping push a car up a hill then trading some passing teenagers $20 to help my car up the same hill. $5 would have been plenty for them, but $20 was worth it to me and was my first offer. Overall, I witnessed general cordiality and patience and was relieved that I did not see any really bad behavior. I know of neighbors who harbored stranded students from my local school or collaborated to bring multiple kids home; I believe these kinds of stories are the rule across the area. I've been very concerned about travelers' overnight safety; for example I have a colleague on the Support team who was still not home as of midnight. So I truly wish that all of you were spared the shocks of what I consider a disaster; this will echo for years.

Good luck,
Ben