First and most important after a title like that, we are fine.
So, there was a light on in the car, related to the electronic stability control. We noted it, but the car seemed to be driving fine, so we decided to wait until September, when things were calmer at work (hahahahahaha) and we were planning to take it in for the 50,000 mile fluid flush/check up anyway.
You may have heard that Texas was experiencing record heats and excessive droughts. I'm used to droughts from New Braunfels. They exist over an aquifer and aquifer levels were always important during summer. And of course, the ability to tube the rivers is a big part of the city income, so I'm used to water restrictions of some kind, but all my time in Houston, this year was the first I could remember such things here.
The problem here in Houston is that the city isn't built for it. We've had a number of water main breaks, which, as you can imagine, isn't good.
In this case, a water main break, a right turn, and the electronic stability control being less than 100% functioning combined to cause the car to fishtail, overcorrect and I had absolutely no control of the car at all. It was one of the scariest moments of my life, particularly when the car did a full 360. We ended up on a curb-height median. It was maybe 10 seconds, but I truly thought for a moment that we were going to end up in on-coming traffic.
In the end, the damage was minor - the splash plate under the car that protects it from debris flying into the engine had to be replaced. There was a bad sensor in the right rear wheel well that caused the erratic reactions by the electronic stability control. That was covered by warranty and they cut us a deal on the rest because the accident was related to that. The part was no cost, we paid labor.
In the end, the rental car cost as much as the repairs. About $800 I didn't anticipate spending, but we are ok, and that is the important thing. I was a hysterical mess immediately after, and DH didn't quite understand why, since we were ok. Once I explained that I had had no control of the car at all, he was a lot more sympathetic. But I'll tell you something - never, ever again. This only clarifies why I will never live in or drive in a state with winter weather. Utterly terrifying.