At 6:53 am this morning, I heard the my bedroom door slowly creak open and in a second, I was out of bed.
“Whoa,” Kyle said, caught off guard by my jolting.
After dressing quickly, I slipped my purse over my head and Kyle and I quietly retreated out of the house.
Already knowing of the thin sheet of ice that lay across my windshield, Kyle ran warm water from a small jug across the glass. I started the car and flipped the wipers on. Our early morning ritual was becoming easy and well-known.
We made our way down the road and I pushed the gas to the floor.
“Um… somebody’s doing 50.”
I glanced down at the spedometer and realized how fast I was going.
“Oh, sorry. I didn’t even see.”
“In a hurry to get back home and sleep?”
“Yeah, I guess…”
The sun was only beginning to rise up from behind the mountains, but the small amount of sunshine brightened the sky enough so to see a sparkling frost where the grass ran alongside the pavement.
My car had slowed to a steady pace of 35 mph.
The only turn with an existing guard rail began to come into view. As I pulled the wheel to the left, I could feel the car lean to the right. Suddenly, the car was lifted off the road and no longer obeyed my steering directions.
I’d lost control.
“Oh, Kyle. We’ve hit ice. Hold on.”
“Hold on! We’re sliding!”
I began to pump the breaks while I pulled the wheel rhythmically to the left. I knew the wheels had locked themselves at a 45 degree angle and wouldn’t respond to my consant jerking.
Thoughts began to run through my mind.
We’re going to hit on the passenger side.
Kyle is sitting on the passenger side.
Kyle’s is my little brother.
Kyle is one of my best friends.
Can I regain control of this situaton?
Can I protect him?
The car stopped bluntly when it made contact with the metal railing. The car sat motionless, propped against the railing which now had a car shaped bubble indented into its surface.
I sat there, both hands on the wheel and staring blankly ahead of me. I could see the 522 freeway about a half mile distance away from us.
Maybe we should have taken 522 this morning.
Remembering Kyle, I looked over at him and saw his expression. He was staring ahead of him too.
“Yeah… Are you ok?”
“Oh, I’m fine. I think the car might be hurt though.”
“That’s ok. It couldn’t be too bad. Might have taken out my headlight though.”
“No, I don’t think so. Looks like you chipped the fender. That’s all.”
A chipped fender and broken reflector. That’s all.