Last night I rear-ended a little black Prius.
I didn’t mean to, of course. In fact, as we were driving down the freeway near one another, I was thinking how cute a car it was. It was black, and for whatever reason I don’t see a lot of black Prius(i? es?) on the road. So I was checking it out, admiring its glossy sheen in the light of the setting sun. Thinking that if I ever bought a Prius myself, I’d want a black one.
Then I exited the freeway. As I was sitting behind the cute little Prius, waiting to make a right turn onto the street, I happened to glance in my rearview mirror to see a white pickup truck coming down the ramp behind me pretty damn fast. I glanced to the left, to see if the coast was clear for me to move up a little or even pull out before the truck got any closer, and I let up off the brake. And that’s when I slammed into the Prius.
Slammed is kind of harsh… it was more like I bumped her. Even so, her car bumper bent inward where we’d made contact, and what looked like a tear in the bumper-material was evident. Man, that bumper was THIN! Like a piece of cardboard with a black candy shell over it. My car, on the other hand, bore no evidence of anything. No scratch, no anything. Whew.
The Prius pulled out into the road when it could, and then pulled over on the side of the road under the overpass. I pulled up behind her. The white truck that technically caused the whole thing, with its speeding towards me? Just passed us and drove away. Asshole.
The weird thing was how CALM I felt. I cursed, of course, and felt like the biggest moron ever. I was at fault here, clearly. I hit her. I’ve never done that before, really. [One time I bumped into the bumper of a van that stopped short right in front of me as we were going through a light, but that was the other driver’s fault and I was only 18 at the time- a brand new driver, practically. And another time in NJ, a car just turned right into my car as I drove past in the next lane. Again, not my fault.] So to be the one who CAUSED an accident… well, that just blows all kinds of balls.
I pulled over, put the hazards on, and got my notebook and insurance card out and copied down all my information along with my phone number and everything. I saw the other driver was doing something inside her car, too…gathering all her paperwork. She got out, and she was an older woman about my Mom’s age, and she looked at her bumper and threw her hands up like, “Great. I can’t believe this.” She looked like she was going to cry.
I got out and apologized in my most sincere voice. Not hard to do, because I was sincerely sorry. I explained what happened, and asked her if she was hurt or anything. She said no, that she was just startled. I handed her my information and with shaking hands, she handed me her insurance card. I copied down all the information and said, “Thank you for not screaming at me. I know this is awful, and I just appreciate that we are handling this like rational people.” She smiled at that and then told me that she feels her car is bad luck. Since she got it, she has been rear-ended a total of THREE times. (Me being the third time.) Wow. Talk about bad luck. I felt very bad for her. I wished I could do something for her, mostly because she seemed like such a nice woman and I had done something to her. I’m definitely not used to hurting anyone, or their cars, to say the least. What a shitty feeling.
Anyway, we got back in our cars after about 5 minutes, and drove away. I was still incredibly calm. I think it’s so weird that I wasn’t freaking out at all, or crying, or anything. I just had a thought in my head like, “Accidents happen; no one was hurt, and getting upset isn’t going to change anything, anyway, etc…” My main concern was, of course, financial. Would this make my rates go up? Now that my spotless driving record was blemished, how bad would it be? Would there be any grace bestowed upon me BECAUSE I have been such a safe driver for so many years? Hmm. I sure hope so. As of right now, my insurance agent STILL hasn’t returned my call so I don’t know. I have my fingers crossed.
At least the night got a hell of a lot better after that!
I met up with my friend Mandy, who I haven’t seen in about four years. I did theater with her for a long time, and then when I got together with NX, I more or less phased out that entire group of friends. He didn’t really like the theater thing, and because my other ex happened to run the main company that me and my friends were affiliated with, that made it extra-verboten. NX couldn’t fathom how I could tolerate ever being in the presence of my other ex at ALL, and acted like I was still attracted to my other ex or something like that. Which was hilarious for about 100 different reasons. [By the time I got together with NX, the other ex was ancient history and I saw him only as a distant friend- all feelings faded when I saw who/what he hooked up with after me, but that’s a whole other story for another day.] We did still stay in touch, I guess, if you count using one another as professional references for jobs. Or the occasional writing-related e-mail (he was also writing a couple of novels and still is). Big deal. I still talk to a couple of my other exes, too. I don’t hold grudges.
Anyway, I am getting sidetracked here. My point is, I finally got to see Mandy again, no strings or weirdness or guilt attached. It was so great! She looked and sounded fantastic, and was so genuine and not at all phony. What I mean is, when she pulled up in her car, and I saw her, she waved and began talking as she got out of the car, like we had just seen each other earlier in the day or something. No loud, “OMG! How ARE you?!! You look AMAZING!” or anything like that. Nope. She’s a cool chick. I like that and respect that about her. I hate the whole squealy-girl thing.
She was recently divorced, too, so we had lots to talk about. We had dinner and talked for about three hours before we finally left. I hope to see her again very soon and pick up on this friendship again, where we left off. It was just a very cool feeling to reconnect with someone like her. Especially now, that we have both had a ton of life experiences since last hanging out.
Well, that was my night.
I am quite the Little Sally McExcitement!
Here are some random photos from the PetWalk last weekend, for your enjoyment:
Ha! All this PetWalk nonsense is all fine and good, but let me tell you something: In Soviet Russia, we no have fancy Pet-Walks. In Soviet Russia, we have Pet Sits-and-Glares!