Warning! Warning!

On Wednesday September 21, 2005, I noticed as I drove around Portland that I was managing to get to every intersection light just as it turned red.  And that it had been happening for a day or two!  By then, I was no longer amused but I decided that someone was trying to tell me something.  Perhaps I should take it easy and not try to rush anywhere in the car. 

Thursday afternoon, I was heading back home and driving down 122nd when I stopped at the red light on Foster.  I planned to go straight when it turned green and take the back-road home.  The light turned green and the traffic on the right was stopped as well as the traffic on the left.  So, I started across the intersection slowly.   I was halfway across when a car appeared on the far-right lane.  It was moving about 45 – 50 miles an hour and the driver was looking straight ahead.  He missed me by about three feet.  I slammed on my brakes and stopped.  He continued without even slowing down.  He never noticed me.

I was surprised that my heart was not beating hard.  It was at that moment that I realized that this moment is what I was being prepared for.  I could have been killed.  At the speed he was traveling, my vehicle would have been slammed around into the traffic turning left on my left side and they would have been slammed into the oncoming traffic that was stopped on the left.  It would have even been possible that my vehicle would have been turned over!  My sunroof was open which means that I might have gone through the roof.  (In 1986, the car I was driving rolled over and my head smashed through the sunroof.  I have a bump on my head to show for it.)  The possibilities were enormous and deadly.

On Friday, I was driving it through green lights again.

As I write this entry a few weeks later, I remember that there is more to this than what I’ve written.  A few weeks ago, as I was stopped at a light, I remember thinking that I needed to be more careful at lights.  I needed to be sure that I looked both right and left and right again before starting through the intersection.  If I didn’t, I would be in a wreck.  I started the conscious effort of looking both ways before starting across the intersection.  Was it a warning or a prediction?  It is now a pattern in my driving even though the event has passed.

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