Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Long Live the Ford Explorer

Long Live the Ford Explorer

For ten years my family had a lovely Red Ford Explorer. It was a great vehicle. I can remember many times helping my dad get the canoe on the top of it. Well, trying to help. I was a bit shorter back then. It was big. You could fit five people in it and not have to worry about hitting the other person or needing more elbow room. It was a wonderful vehicle.

I can remember the first time I finally was able to get behind the wheel. I was jittery. I couldn’t wait to start the engine which when I did start I thought for sure I had killed the engine. I held it turned all the way for too long and I could have cried, but thankfully there was no lasting damage. Though, my mother was a little worried from then on.

We had used that Ford Explorer for random road trips, head banging music parties while still on the road, and many other family things. It was such a blast until my sister’s first day away from home.

We were on our way home from dropping my sister off at college about four hours away. My little brother was in the front passenger seat and I was laid across the back sleeping. I wasn’t buckled; I was just unconscious to the world until I sudden awoke feeling the car come to a stop. I can’t exactly explain what had happened next, but I sat up in the center back seat and proceeded to put on my seat belt.

This is the strangest thing I could do because I never wear a seatbelt in the back. Many times I have been told too, but I didn’t. Suddenly I’m waking up putting on a seatbelt without question. Yeah, something wasn’t right.

I’m always a little on the paranormal, spiritual, or just plain weird side of things. I sat there in silence confused by my actions and then it happened. My mother pulled forward. It happened so fast. The sound of two vehicles colliding sounds completely different when you are inside one of them. The crunch is more distinct and the sound of panicking people is more fearful then if you were just watching.

Everyone was okay. The other person’s car must have flipped three times before stopping upright, but the man was completely unharmed. He was furious and darted awfully fast towards us with foul words. But I must give him credit. He may have been mad, but the moment he saw liquid pouring out the bottom of our car he was yelling for us to get out. I was reached forward and pulled David into the back seat with me getting him out of the car, but when I tried to help mum the door was stuck.

It all happened really fast and I don’t remember if I was alone prying mom’s door open out of fear and adrenaline, but I distinctly remember everyone’s comments and conversations. They were blaming my mother. We were standing right there and all they could talk about was the fact that she pulled out when it was obvious he was there. I just wanted to scream at people to be quiet.

Yes my mother pulled out a little too soon, but she had not had any sort of accidents in over ten years. I would say that’s an accomplishment. The other driver was also driving on the right side of the road and at the last second slid over into the left without prior warning. So when my mother thought her lane was going to be clear and she began to pull out he had already started too slid over.

What allows people to be rude and not take in the fact that the individuals are hurting regardless of who was right or wrong? The first thing they want to hear isn’t that they were to blame, but that everyone is okay. Or that they are going to be okay.

Neither parties pressed charges and the insurance took care of everything, but the mental scars of the accident itself. We found out later that there had been an accident not long before us involving an eighteen wheeler and a smaller vehicle. You can guess who won and you can also guess who didn’t survive. It’s scary and it’s real. Accidents happen, but remember that you can always replace a car. You can’t replace the person. So drive safe, buckle up, and use a turn signal, because no matter how good a driver you might be you don’t’ know about the other person.

B. Franklin


  1. Wow! We've got to talk about this. Also, the article was well written.

    1. Okay. when ever we get a working land line I'll give you a call one day or just see you pretty soon.