Everyone has those moments in life where you stop and think to yourself, “I, am going to remember this forever.” Sometimes they are good memories, beautiful stories with friends you will someday tell your children. And sometimes, they are bad. Instead of saying “I hope I never forget this” you tell yourself “I hope I don’t remember this.” It is in those times of extreme fear that we find the greatest learning point in life, for example, Blake, and the almost car crash.
It was a beautiful summer night, I was with my best friend Justine and her brother Andy. Her brother got a call from his friend Blake asking if he wanted to hang out since he only lived a block away, we all got into Andy’s car and headed over. This was mistake number one. The beginning of the night was fine, we picked up Blake and went to Walmart. Now let me tell you, running around Walmart in the middle of the night is fun. Justine picked up two Red Bull’s and I picked up sour gummy worms. Andy drove the 15 minutes back to blake’s house.
Blake was working on his little red Honda in the driveway. Justine and I climbed into the backseat and blasted music while eating our candy. After what felt like forever, he peaked his head up and says “It’s ready. Wanna go for a spin?” A smile on all of our faces. Justine yells out what we were all thinking “Duh!!” Andy gives us a look of defeat, then looks at Blake.
“Fine. One ride around the block. And no going over 40 MPH, I am taking my car to the house and you better be there by the time I am.” Andy gave strict directions, he knew Blake liked to mess around and he didn’t wanna risk anything with Justine and me in the car. “Okay okay, I promise” Blake spoke in a sarcastic tone with a grin. In this moment my heart started to race. What was Blake going to do?
Andy drove down the block and Blake followed him, at the stop sign Andy turned left heading back to the house, Blake turned right and suddenly hit the gas. Justine and I flew back to our seats. Uncontrollable laughter coming from the backseat, Blake decides to speed up more. He sped down the block, going what seemed like hundreds of miles per hour. By the time we were passing Justine’s house, Andy was standing at the end of the driveway waiting for us. Right as Blake started to slow down he hit the gas again, speeding passed Andy. Now my heart was racing a little more. It was close to one in the morning, Blake must have been exhausted and not thinking well which made me feel unsafe to have him driving this fast especially in the dark. Justing kept egging him on, yelling for him to go faster. All I could do was sink back in my seat and try and relax. After about the third lap around the block, he pushed it too far.
We were turning the corner down Justine’s block when he tried to drift the corner. He sped up and suddenly turned way too fast, it was in this moment everything seemed slow motion. I looked down to see I wasn’t wearing my seatbelt. All I remember going through my head was “It’s too late to put my seatbelt on.” I remember the feeling of the can crunching in my hand as my head smacked against Justine’s thinking, “I should have worn a seatbelt. If this car flips and I die it is all my fault.” I let out a scream as I see Blake swerving out of the way of several parked cars and an oak tree, we are still spinning. I feel the right side of the car start to lift and I remember the fear rushing through me as I thought the car was going to roll over. The car finally stopped spinning. I couldn’t breathe and I was shaking horribly.
I looked down, Red bull was covering my entire leg, and my head was throbbing horribly from when Justine and I smacked together. My red bull can was crumpled in my hand, My hand almost bleeding from the sharp edges digging into my fingers. I looked out the window to see we were in someone’s yard, inches away from a tree that could have easily totaled the car and sent us flying. Andy runs up to the car yelling, “Oh my god! Are you guys alright?!” Practically dragging us out of the back seat and walking us home, muttering how we were never supposed to see him again and how sorry he was to let us get into his car in the first place. Neither Justine or I spoke, I think we were just in shock, I couldn’t form any words.
A three-minute ride around the block had suddenly turned into a life altering event. I sometimes drive down that street and see the circle of skid marks and my heart races again. I hear flashes of screams and tires skidding as the spin out replays in my mind. The crumpled can dropping out of my hand as I realize we survived. I still see Blake in the hallways sometimes, we avoid eye contact. And never again, will I ever get into a car without putting on a seatbelt.
Photo by charlie cars
Life altering events by Katie is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.