My Friday didn’t go as planned. Some of these details may be a bit sketchy – why, will become clear in a moment – but I was involved in a serious car accident today while sitting still at a stop light and spent a good share of the day in the emergency room. Good to start a story like this at the beginning.
I was going to go to the gym. Borrowed my dad’s truck, went out to start it and the battery was dead. (Should’ve took that as an omen). I called him to come give it a jump and he and his assistant swung by and did. Normally, we would go to lunch together but we just didn’t for whatever reason. Maybe, we should’ve. I let the truck charge up for 10 minutes and during that time I discovered the source of a leak in the engine we had been trying to spot for weeks. I was going to call my dad and tell him about it when I got to the gym. He had told me he was going to put new brakes on next week and I said I’d have the oil changed. The leak, brakes, and oil don’t matter now.
I took off and hit the stop light about a mile from the house. I was stopped in a line of traffic. The guy behind me took that to mean we were all going full speed and hit the gas.
I was flung up in the air when I realized something was wrong and about the same time heard an explosive metal crunching sound behind me. Now maybe I have lived in the Middle East too often but my first reaction was that a bomb had exploded behind me and I remember starting to turn to see the source of the explosion when I landed in my seat, banging my head a couple times on the seat. I also apparently hit the ceiling on the way up. If my seatbelt hadn’t been on, there is little doubt I would’ve been thrown through the window.
The impact then pushed me straight into the truck in front of me bringing another impact and head blow. I didn’t remember this part until I was in the E.R. but pretty much recall it now. The blows nearly knocked me out. I am really hard to knock out – it’s been tried – and I think most people would’ve lost consciousness at this point. As it was, I was very dazed. It took me a couple minutes to register where I was and what was up. I could also feel the huge knot which I still have on the base of my skull.
The guy who hit me was actually nice. He ran to check on me. He said he saw me bouncing around the cab of the truck. He called an ambulance. He called my dad to meet me at the hospital. I don’t think I have ever taken a ride on a stretcher before but I did today. I had one of those neck braces on so all I saw was the sky which is an interesting perspective really. I may use that someday in a story.
The police arrived, as did the ambulance. So did the fire department because apparently my gas tank ruptured and fuel was spilling over the road. I never really took all this in and didn’t even connect with a police officer who had gone on a relief trip to Haiti with my dad after the earthquake down there.
At the hospital, the head scans were ok so they sent me home with orders to do nothing for a couple days. Next week they said before I am back to me. I am really disoriented. Very scattered really. I start something, get distracted, then go ‘oh, yeah….’ . They gave me pills for the pain because my head is spinning and feels like cathedral bells were ringing in it.
My dad recovered my Bob Dylan concert baseball cap I was wearing. Somehow, it came off my head in the wreck. The truck he says is probably totalled. Seems the guy who hit me went over the back bumper, moved the bed itself, and the seats in the cab actually shifted and are stuck. In the front, the grill went through the AC unit. Both bumpers are shot. I never got to see damage to other guy’s vehicles but you have to assume they didn’t fare much better.
Life is strange. Some days, it is just stranger. At least I am still around to see what tomorrow has in mind.