December 20, 2012Strangers Became Family This Christmas
After we were first married, we moved about 300 miles away to New Mexico. On Christmas Eve, my wife and I started to drive back to stay with her (not-so-nice) parents over the holidays. There was snow on the ground, so I stopped in Santa Fe to change to my snow tires. Upon leaving, I spun out on the freeway exit and had to wait for a tow truck to pull us out of the snow. So we were late getting to the mountain pass that separates New Mexico from Colorado. By the time we arrived, a full blizzard was in effect. We went over Raton Pass using the Braille method (as my wife put it.)
Once over the pass, we made the decision to continue, even though the blizzard was now more intense (70 MPH winds); she desperately wanted to be at her parent's house for Christmas. At Walsenburg, CO, we finally pulled off the road because we couldn't see to drive. The state police came by because the road was now closed and led us off the freeway to a small diner.
About 14 of us were there in the diner, snowed in, with no place to go, but we were all safe. The owners of the diner opened their hearts to us to help. We called our loved ones on the diner phone, talked, played games, swapped stories, and had a great time with all the stranded people who we did not even know. Christmas Eve night, we slept on the uncomfortable red plastic diner seats.
In the morning the road was open, so we continued on to my in-laws house. When we arrived, they asked us what took us so long; they had already had their Christmas without us. We sat there and opened our presents with no one around. To this day, I contrast the great time we had at the diner to the lousy time we had with her parents. God was really taking care of us that year and gave us a great Christmas with people that cared for us.
Posted by Staff at 10:00 AM