It was Sunday morning. The rain had finished earlier but drops still plummeted to the ground- flung by the wind. I imagine the road was still a little wet.
We were outside. I'm not sure what we were talking about. Just minutes earlier he was making fun of my attire- the polka dotted boots, cut off sweats, and turquoise cardigan. I'd later be elated that I bothered to put on a bra.
Then squealing tires. Screeching brakes trying to grab the road. Running. The slow sound of bouncing, crumbling metal. Over and then over and then silence. And then yelling- me and the Fella.
The Fella- Your cell is by the TV.
Running. Through the house- in the backdoor and out the front.
Hopping a fence.
No one is answering. No one is answering! I screamed.
Me- Why is he standing by the road? Why? No.
The truck was empty. Still running. Frozen in time. Pointed in the other direction as if it wanted to drive back in time. Turn around and go back to where it came from. It wanted to slow down. To know about the curve.
He was laying by the road. The driver. Much like the animals you see and wonder why they were trying to cross in the first place.
He moaned. He moved. Oh thank god he moved. But he had to stay still. He repeated his phone number and he wanted his mom. Of course.
Then the helping hands of neighbors, and sirens, curious onlookers and silent prayers.
The helicopter landed in the cow pasture across the road.
And then it was over. Had it really happened?
We live on a straight stretch of road that lies quietly between two tricky curves. Two possibly devastating curves. We hear the desperate tires all the time. The brakes and the speed. The flashing lights break up the deep darkness of the country some nights. I've called my neighbor more than once to tell him his fence is down again.
This was the first time it was our problem. For just a few moments in time it was ours. He was ours. For just a split second. He's a 19 year old kid with a broken back, ruptured spleen. Gashes and road rash.
To say he is lucky seems, well, not the right thing to say. He is. He's alive. He has his life. I wonder what he will do with it.
I hope he will slow down.
I hope he will wear his seat belt.
Just slow down.
I don't know him. I doubt I ever will. He has our number. I gave that to his mom when I spoke to her on Monday. I sent her the pictures. Once he wasn't ours- I sought out my camera. But I'm not showing those. I think those belong to him.
So, if you wonder where I disappeared to- that's where we've been. We've been with him. And we've been thanking Him. Life happens, doesn't it? It just happens.