my creative adventures

Accidents happen March 17, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — paulien @ 6:14 pm

No drawings this time. I want to share a story today. It is something that I saw happening while on my way to the university one beautiful morning.

I was on the bus, and had just finished my book. I was looking out of the window, but not really paying attention to what I was seeing, while the bus stood waiting for a traffic light. Then something weird caught my eye.

A girl, or woman, was getting on her bike in the middle of the road. There is a special lane for people on bicycles, but for some reason she was at the lane for cars.  While she was getting on her bike, the light for cars around the corner went green, and a van started driving.

He went around the corner, on the lane where the woman was. He didn’t see her. He hit her.

He hit his brakes immediately after he noticed here, but it was to late. I, and some other people on the bus, saw her trying to get away from the van to the side. She couldn’t, and fell down. The front wheels of the van went over her and her bike, before to van came to a halt. She lay under the van, moved her foot a bit, and then nothing.

Someone next to me started calling the alarm service. The driver of the van got out and went to look, he was as white as a sheet. At this moment the light for the bus went green, and we drove away.

My stop was next, and I after a few minutes talking to a friend I walked back to the place of the accident. I told the police all I had seen. They wanted to know what had happened, both for the family of the girl an for the driver. If he was doing something wrong, he could be prosecuted. I don’t think he was guilty at all, he was driving where he was supposed to drive, went very slowly and his light was green.

After I had told the policeman everything, I asked if he knew anything about the girl. She had died shortly after she arrived at the hospital. I didn’t know her, but I guess she was about my age.

I have been thinking a lot about it, and I don’t think I  will ever forget what I saw.  I wish the family all the best, and the driver. It must be horrible for him.

Why do I want to share this? After the first few days of being sad about it, I started to try to think differently. It is horrible, but sitting at home being sad is not going to help anybody. What I learned from this is that life is too good to be wasted like that. The girl in the accident could have been me, but it wasn’t. I am alive, and I should be grateful. This thought I want to share with anyone I know.

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11 Responses to “Accidents happen”

  1. lin Says:

    What a horrific and horribly sad story … my gracious ..prayers for that entire family!

  2. Brenda Says:

    A very similar accident happened several years ago to my cousin’s daughter, who was 14 at the time. It was a horrible tragedy, the witnesses who came forward with their words that death was immediate was of great comfort. I’m so glad you told your eyewitness account, I’m sure those words will get to both families and will be a source of comfort in the difficult days ahead.

  3. Joanne Says:

    Wow, even to just have witnessed this must have been terribly traumatic. Thank you for sharing your story and reminding us that life is fragile and precious. Blessings.
    –Joanne

  4. It’s true, Paulien, all we have is NOW. The challenge is to live our lives with that idea as our guiding principle. Thank-you for the reminder.

  5. susan hosken Says:

    I’m so glad you shared the story with EDM. I’m sure it will help you recover from the shock. I’m glad you also got involved rather than walking away. I hope you feel better soon. Lots of love from Susan in Australia

  6. Christeen Says:

    Holy smokes- what a story! Life certainly seems short and precious after something like that! Like a swift kick in the pants, getting a sense of our own mortality sure can help us focus on the things that really matter. You’re an angel for going back, and getting involved. Thanks for sharing this.
    Christeen

  7. laserone Says:

    Oh my gosh, I am so sorry you had to see that, had to go through that, and I am so sorry for that girl and her family. Writing about it is helpful, too. I think journaling, whether in a book or online, is very therapeutic. I think it’s good you wrote about it. *hugs*

  8. Linda Says:

    What a tragic story! I’m glad you shared — we all need to be reminded from time to time that life is precious and brief.
    (((hugs)))

  9. Sherie Says:

    I can relate to your feelings. We witnessed a similar accident in NYC about 5 years ago. It was a messenger trying to squeeze between a dump truck and a panel van. The light changed, the dump truck driver couldn’t see the messenger and ran right over him. What amazed me was that the guy never cried out at all. My husband laid on his horn and when the panel van driver looked in his mirror to see what the ruckus was all about, he saw what was happening and jumped out and flagged the dump truck driver. We called 911, but all I could think about was what was going to happen to this guy. He wouldn’t be able to work and his transportation was destroyed. It was very sad. He wasn’t killed, but it would be a long time recovering for him. I realized how making a bad decision can be costly. My thoughts were like yours.

  10. Jilly in Australia Says:

    It’s not until death touches you so closely and dramatically that you realise how fragile our lives are. I do know how you’re feeling. Near where I live there is a power pole, all covered with flowers.They have been left there by Amy’s friends. Amy was in my class a few years ago, a sweet quiet little girl, and killed last week when a car ran a red light and hit her father’s car on their way home from school. She was only 16 and her sister is still fighting for her life in intensive care. Many times you see crosses or flowers by the roadside where someone has been killed. I know each time I pass that spot now I will think of what a lovely girl Amy was.

  11. Serena Says:

    What a very sad story. It certainly does put our lives into perspective when we witness such tragic situations or even hear of them. It makes us realise that every moment should be precious. I’m sorry you had to witness it and my heart goes out to the young girl’s family also. (((Hugs)))


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