I had a scary moment yesterday.
As I was leaving work, I was heading up Wyndham Lane towards Market Street, taking the back avenue towards home, as I always do. Some years ago I started going around the block to the street light on the corner to make my left turn. It simply seemed a safer route to go. It was not this day.
At approximately 4:10 in the afternoon, a young driver in an older VW Jetta took the turn off of Market onto Wyndham too fast and came over, brakes screeching, into oncoming traffic. As fate would have it, at that precise moment in time, the Rogue One and I were the only obstacles in the way of her making a clean mistake.
I bought the Rogue One on May 28th of this year, 70 days ago. After 69 days of having the first vehicle I can truly say I loved, as much as one can love an object that is neither sentient nor reciprocal, it has been rendered inoperable. This is life.
I say that not meaning that life has a way of beating us down, or that it sucks. I say it meaning life simply happens, the good stuff and the bad, quite often without a moment’s notice. You never really know what the next moment will bring, for a 49-year old man or a 16-year old girl.
We both walked away from this incident, seemingly without harm. The driver of the other vehicle complained of some arm pain, and her parents were taking her to a walk-in to get it checked out. I hope with all my might that she is alright, both physically and emotionally, after such an ordeal. The first one of these can be traumatic. Well, honestly, any of them can be, but it appears, at this point, that both of us will be just fine. That is far more important than the fate of any car, even a cherished 69-day old Star Wars Limited Edition one.
I have some aches and pains today, but as a 49-year old man I have aches and pains most every day. Separating today’s pains from yesterday’s pains is difficult, but I’ll monitor it to make sure there is nothing new. It doesn’t feel as such today.
The young lady who caused the accident is dealing with something new today. She was beside herself apologetic for the mishap, shaken and in tears. Accidents happen, I told her, empathetically. This is why we have insurance, her father added, only care and understanding in his eyes. Both parents were on scene within moments, and their only concern was for their daughter’s safety (and mine). As it should be. Cars be damned. When she drove away as a passenger in her mother’s car, tears still streaming, I caught her attention and gave her two thumbs up. I think she smiled when she waved back. I hope she knows there is no malice. This is life.
I’ll be ride-sharing for a while, or getting a rental vehicle, while the insurance companies sort out the Rogue. I feel like I borrowed it for a while, like it was never really mine. It’s funny how much we can care for a thing, and how quickly stuff can happen to it anyway. This seasoned man is reminded of all that really matters. I walk away. She walks away. The worst possible thing either of us, or anyone who loves us, can imagine, did not occur. We are safe.
So, be careful out there, as best you can, but know that – with nary a moment’s notice – something bad can fall upon you in an instant. Understand that bad happens in degrees. Today I have one less car in my garage but I have everything else I ever had before. In a very real sense, nothing bad has happened to me, at all. I am whole and, in a twist of irony, more grateful for this day than I was for the one before.
Be grateful for your day, as well. And, if you’re not too busy, give me an occasional ride somewhere.
At least for a while.
My spaceship will be in drydock for a bit.