It’s one of my favorite times of the year. I enjoy attending various functions and parties, catching up with friends and family, getting updates on how their lives have been. Sometimes early winter/late fall weather does not cooperate with our plans. Here are a few ways to use technology to get to our Thanksgiving dinners and Christmas parties.
I will admit, I don’t like commercial airlines and try to avoid them, however, I have picked up quite a few people at the airport and brought them to the family functions. One website that I like quite a bit is flightaware.com. You can view all the information you want on the flights you are tracking. They also offer companion mobile apps for all the common platforms.
If you travelling via road, here are a few mobile apps that I like. In urban areas apps like google’s map show traffic slow downs. This can be nice for calculating arrive times or even selecting a different route.
A good weather app is really nice too. One that I use is from weather.com. It gives black ice warnings and winter weather advisories to let me know if I need to leave early.
If you are driving through areas without cell service and you are nervous about that, there are some neat devices out now that use satellite technology. The delorme inReach SE can allow you to sent a text message without cell service. I leave in rural Maine and I know all about no cell service.
Aside from technology, here are a few items I keep in my vehicles that have helped me in a pinch.
Jumper cables are awesome. Sometimes cars will not start at certain angles and cold weather drains batteries faster. If you put your car in a ditch and it’s at a 40 degree angle, it might not run, but it’s tempting to just keep turning it over and run your battery dead. Enter jumper cables, as soon as the car is on level ground, give it a minute, then put the jumper cables to it and start her up. Additional, sometimes we have some really cold weather and with an older battery, it just can’t start up the vehicle.
Tow strap, especially those nylon ones, are handy. If you are in the snow bank, or you see somebody in the snowbank, it’s nice to have something to pull them out.
A small shovel serves two purposes. If you car is stuck because too much wet snow is under it, you can shovel it out. Also, if you are stuck on glare ice, shoveling snow from the bank to the ice can help.
I carry a bucket of sand with me. It’s amazing stuff for traction. Put some on the track where the tires are going. If you don’t carry sand, sometimes several pine bough can be placed in the track way for traction.