Monday, May 23, 2016

I wonder what ever happened to...



     The nine-month pregnant mother in the head-on car crash I witnessed on the highway near Rochester was rushed off by ambulance to the hospital quickly before the rest of the accident victims were thoroughly examined.
     The whole thing should never have occurred in the first place – thus, the name accident – except an overanxious driver behind me decided to pass three cars, one of which was mine.
     Mistake. A car was coming in our direction.
     I knew the two cars would hit. I had that bad feeling in my gut and the sound at impact was a huge deafening noise, which was frightening.
     Fortunately, I was able to veer to the right on the shoulder and get out of the way. The driver who had darted out suffered minor injuries, and immediately, he was out of his car assessing the damage.
     It was the young woman that emergency personnel were most concerned about.
    Along with everyone else, the police questioned me. When I got home badly shaken, I wrote everything down that I had seen just in case I would have to testify in court. I was positive that my mind would play tricks on me later and the story would blur.
     An appearance never came to be, and I know nothing more.

***

      The credit card I lost somewhere while shopping is a complete mystery.
      I didn’t realize it until the next day when I was rearranging my purse and the card was missing from its usual spot.
      Retracing my steps, I went back to each store hopeful after cancelling the card with the bank. I should have know better that if the card had been turned in by an employee or customer at one of the smaller stores, I would have been contacted.
     I was convinced it must have dropped on the floor in the supermarket when I rushed to put it away while grabbing my shopping bags. At least, that’s what I visualized in my mind. Not so.
     Nothing had been charged to the card. It could have been far worse. It was only a tiny blip on life’s speed bumps. However, it drove me crazy trying to figure out how I might have been so careless. Lesson learned for the time being - until the next slip up.
     That mistake stays unsolved and the card is long gone crunched into bits in garbage heaven. May it rest in pieces.

***

     My seat companion on a short flight from Paris to Bilbao, Spain, has a special reason to be excited about the trip. She came all the way from Toronto to reunite with a distant relative she had connected with through Ancestory.com.  
     While we sipped tea and pastries, the woman shared that her growing up years were in Spain during the Second World War. Her family fled to Canada leaving behind relatives and friends. She wore the clothes on her back and carried a small suitcase of her earthly possessions.
     She told me how this girl and her were close growing up. Apparently, they had lost touch over the years, and she sighed saying that moving to a new world kept her family too busy.
     “People get let go other than in your memory,” she said.
   A lucky break determined her ability to actually meet her relative that lived in the Basque Country. It seems that her grown daughter and son-in-law had moved from Canada to Bilbao for work a couple years prior to her searching her genealogy. Once she had established the connection, the Bilbao daughter met the relative and convinced her mother to travel.
    When we parted at the end of the flight, I wished her good blessings. It was joyful watching someone walk off the plane in such high spirits.  I hope the reunion went well.

***

     The cab driver and the two other male passengers were stuffed in like sardines with my daughter and me for a four- hour drive from Albany to Islip.
     It was a snowy late afternoon when flights from Albany were grounded and since my plane was heading to Long Island, the airline – those were the days – put us in taxis bound south free of charge.
     I could see that the other cabs were filling up faster than ours. Sure, no one wanted to be cooped up with a frantic mother and a weary child, especially if they were to find out that the little girl was mega prone to carsickness.
     A head would pop in, look at us and pull back out to find another cab. Finally, two latecomers had no choice but us.
     Besides, it would be a slow drive on slick roads.
     None of that happened. The cab driver was cheerful and sang all the way taking turns with the rest of us. We were spontaneous and goofy. There was no stick-in-the mud in our midst.
     By the time we arrived at the Islip airport no worse for the wear, all was forgotten when my parents came to greet us.
     Sometimes when you anticipate a certain outcome, you get surprised. Look at how great things turned out when everyone co-operated and made the most of an unfortunate situation.
     The cab driver had to turn around and go back to Albany. The other two businessmen went out the revolving doors. Thanks everyone. And by the way, my daughter never got carsick on this adventure either.
***

    We all wonder about people, places and things from time to time that come into our lives for a brief moment.