Oh boy. Once I started thinking through this, there have been a few too many.
College - drove around a corner on a twisty road and someone pulled of the shoulder directly in front of me. They were executing a U-turn to cross the double-yellow, from the shoulder. I managed to slam on the brakes and spin my car out INSIDE the other car’s arc. I slid over onto the shoulder and hyperventilated for a few minutes.
Business travel - Flying into SFO, the pilot suddenly pulled hard. Complete silence in the cabin while we maneuvered for few minutes. Then he came on and said that another airplane was using the runway to take off. He had to maneuver to miss them. Don’t know whose mistake it was, but I was glad not to be on the evening news that night.
Car trip - coming back from the Bay Area to Albany, OR (just south of Salem) around New Year’s. Reached Shasta and Interstate 5 was closed due to snow. We were already in the mountains, it was night, and there was nowhere to stay. So we consulted our navigation system and headed off on a side road to get around the closure. Big mistake. Do not EVER do this. We ended up traveling very slowly on unplowed roads while the snow kept getting deeper. It took up most of the night to get around and back onto I-5. There were multiple times when I thought that we were going to be found in the Spring after the snow melted. I will say this: Toyota makes an awesome AWD. We got through all of it without chains.
F3 tornado in St. Louis. We had spent the day seeing the Arch and visiting museums. We knew there was bad weather coming in, but late Spring there’s always bad weather coming in. We headed East on I-70 to get back to Columbia. As we were passing the St. Louis airport, in heavy rain, all of the lights went out. All of the lights lining the interstate, everything that we could see in any direction. Bad hail, horrific winds. Howling noise. Lightning. We’re on an urban interstate, with concrete barriers, so it wasn’t even possible to get off the road and look for shelter. So we stopped under an over-pass with 9-10 other cars and a semi. The F3 tornado went right over us. I could feel the front end of the car starting to pick up. We travelled another minute or so after it passed before we got stuck for hours in stopped traffic. There were big rigs, just a short bit ahead of us, that had been tossed and piled up on one another. My son, now 10, insists that we weren’t in a tornado because it was just windy with a lot of stuff flying around. I think he believes the cartoon depictions, where they have discrete walls, so there should have been a visible wall of black or something.