Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Turkey Tale #1: Traffic Terror!

It's a little over an hour into the drive to Virginia, and as we emerge from a tunnel on the Merritt Parkway, red break lights begin to pulse ahead of us.

"Man, that dude just hit the median!" says J, as traffic abruptly slows and begins scooting over to the right. I lean to the left across J's line of sight, and about 50 yards ahead I see a truck with it's left front tire resting half way up the jersey barrier. The car in front of us moves to the right lane, and as he does we see a white van, hazard lights blinking, coming right at us. J quickly moves to the right lane and we watch the van go by, against traffic, in the fast lane.

"You can’t do that!" I say, thinking it's some sort of service van trying to get to...behind us...by driving into oncomming traffic?

"There was no one behing the wheel" says J, stunned.

Huh?

And sure enough, as we pass the wrecked truck crunched against the left median barrier, a few yards up, on the right side shoulder, sits a tow truck. And next to the tow truck stands a dude, with his hands on his head, mouth open - completely mortified. Next to him is a lady on a cell phone, hopefully calling an ambulance. Either for the guy in the truck, or the numerous people that are behind us, not knowing that an ½ ton van is barreling down at them head on. Terrified at the danger of the situation, I turn around to see the van hit the Jersey barrier, and hopefully slow down? When it passed us it was only going about 15mph, but we were on a hill, a STEEP hill, so that van could really have gained some speed. But as we crest the top of the hill, I don't see whether the van has come to a stop.

Holy Moly, I felt lucky. If we left 5 minutes later, who knows? Thank God I wasn't driving. I might have thought the van was trying to win at some game of chicken, and since I was the one driving in the CORRECT direction, I obviously had righteousness on my side. But as everyone knows, you can't play chicken with gravity. Gravity will always win.

Postscript: I checked the Internet afterwards, and there was no report of anyone being hurt, or of the incident itself, so let’s hope everything turned out ok.

1 comment:

amy. said...

Holy crap! I'm glad you are all safe and sound.