Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Providence Strikes Again

I needed the car one day last week so I got up with Paul at 5:00 am to drive him to work. We were supposed to get up by 4:00 to shovel, so we booted to the mini-van in record time.

I love driving through Blue Hills on the way. Residential Boston ends and trees surround you. The stars are brilliant as city lights fade the deeper into the forest you go. It’s deer country so I plead with them to stay off the road while I’m there. A few times I’ve seen them and eagles as well. Going through one way was easy, the return trip was a bit tricky...

After dropping Paul off at work on the other side of the Hills, the roads were still quiet. I drove slowly through the ice on the reservoir road. The salt restrictions make it slippery there. I wondered what would happen if I veered off and decided to pull back down to 20 so I didn’t find out; it would be at least another hour before anyone discovered me if I ditched. The streets were fine that were salted but then I wondered about the Hills. I hadn’t really considered it before and thought of little deer feet making crunchy salt footprints everywhere; more than likely they don’t salt for that reason.

I turned into the Hills noticing I was very much alone. By daylight that is a treasured thing, but in the frosty pre-dawn, it was a little scary. I careened down a side road and quickly looking both ways saw no on-comers so I didn’t bother stopping for the sign. I’m not sure I could have anyway, the road wasn’t safe, my traction disappeared a few times. The vehicle that came up fast behind me was a snow plow. Good, if I wrecked, he’d help. If I’d waited at the stop sign, he would have been in front of me and perhaps wouldn’t have noticed if I suddenly wasn’t there. It was wisdom to blow the stop sign, it was better with him behind me.


We caravanned through the hills with his lights bright in my rear view. I almost turned the little knob on the mirror to lessen the glare but we were moving into civilization so I didn’t bother. I’d change lanes in a few minutes and let him pass. His headlights beamed harshly in the rear view waiting at the light because he was closer and they were forcing me to wake up more, nooooo!

The light turned green and I gunned it into the second lane ahead, certain he’d claim the first lane to pass me.

When I moved through the intersection I didn’t see any flash of light in my rearview or side mirrors nor did I hear any truck motor. I checked everywhere slowing down. He couldn’t have turned, I would have caught that in my mirrors. I stopped the van and searched the empty intersection, listening to the tiny clicks of changing signals overhead. No cars, no trucks, one van, only mine.

A truck angel, I think he was a truck angel which means the roads were a lot worse than I knew, either that or I drove through the icy hills in my sleep, dreaming about obnoxious head lights… whichever was true, it was a miracle. Way to go, God!

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