September 24, 2008

FENDER BENDER a bump in the night


Last night, while sitting at a red light, our car was hit by another car. It was a minor fender bender. It took me a few seconds to realize what had happened, and if Lois hadn't of said, "Someone just hit our car," I might not have figured out why there was a blue van rubbing up against the passenger doors. Our car gently swayed back and forth - something I couldn't quite understand. And then Lois said, "He's trying to drive away!" Things were slowly beginning to make sense, and then I realized I couldn't open up my door. The vehicle next to me had us pinned in. The first thing I asked everyone was, "Are you okay?" Rattling off name's one by one. When one of the girls didn't answer the question, I asked again. Everybody was okay. Lois had already gotten out of the car and I could hear her calling the police on her cell phone. I was stuck in the Mazda and I knew the only way I was going to get out of it was either through my window, or over the tiny console. When I rolled down my window I could see why the car was rocking. The driver was trying to drive away. The console it was...

...Today as I thumbed through my digital camera I ran across a dozen or so pictures that I had taken last night. Halfway through them I saw the man that we had helped put in jail. Last night he was a drunk driver. This morning he woke up in a jail cell for a DUI.

"I need you to turn off your engine," I yelled through his closed window. His hand was still shifting gears, he repeatedly put his van into reverse and drive; yet going nowhere. Finally I chose the right words, "Take the keys out of your engine." The van went still. I immediately assumed he was drunk, but just to make sure I asked him if he was okay or if he was having any medical problems. It didn't take long to see that he didn't understand me. He tried to open his door but he was pinned in from his side. I opened up the passenger door and explained to him that he had to get out on my side. I told him that he had just run into our car. He slowly climbed out of his car, beer bottles clinked on the floor. We stood outside in the cold and I asked him for his car keys. He handed them to me and said that he was sorry. I don't think I've ever seen somebody look so sad. He pleaded with me to let him go. All I could think of to say was, "I'm Sorry." We were 1,000 feet away from the police station...

..."I'm sorry," said the dispatcher, "We'll get someone there right away." She was five stories above us looking right at us. Police cars were parked all around the building and nobody came. Ten minutes passed by; then twenty. It would be almost a half hour later by the time anyone showed up. The girls were bundled up in light sweaters we managed to round up out of the trunk. Ironically the squad car that showed up came from somewhere in the city. Not from the police station across the street. Now came the waiting.

In the time we were there I began to feel sorry for the man, but I had to remind myself, someone on that night could have died. My children, my wife, or any other innocent bystander. Somebody could have died...

...last night he was drunk driver. Today I hope his life has changed.

2 comments:

Ames said...

Wow, thats some crazy stuff. I have totally been there. Lorne and I were driving in a four lane road and were side swiped going about 35. The guy that hit us just kept driving to get away and he was going about 45. So we started to chase him and we sped up and a police officer was going to pull us over for speeding. So we shouted out our window that someone just hit our car and now he is driving through a neighborhood going extremely fast... He had to have hit 15 cars on the chase but we had to go to his car to identify him. He was very intoxicated as well as an illegal immigrant. He never apologized and could hardly stand up but I felt better about getting him behind bars because you are right...some could have died and that is the truth...

SOMETHING HAPPENED SOMEWHERE TURNING said...

The more I think about it, the more I hope they just lock him up. Why should anyone end suffering for his thoughtless actions.

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