Yesterday we nearly died.
No I’m not being melodramatic.
We were travelling out to our favourite country pub when we came within a few metres of a head-on collision with another motorist. It was on a stretch of road with three lanes, two going up the hill (my side of the road) and one down. I’ll not bore you with the details but suffice to say that the solid white lines should have told the drive coming in the opposite direction not to over take when they did. But then you’d also have thought that she would not have overtaken on the blind bend either.
We were both doing 40-50 mph so a closing speed of over 90 mph would probably have had only one outcome. Luckily, due to Suze shouting out a warning (she was positioned better than me to see the other car careering round the bend) and my reactions we shed enough speed for the maniac coming in the other direction, who didn’t even seem to register that I was there.
I carried on driving for a few hundred metres, then said to Suze “I’m going after that bastard”. From the original adrenalin punch in the guts that the sight of the Black Peugeot heading straight for us had given me I had now had chance to develop a red, flaming fury that curiously did not have my heart beating or pounding out of my chest as you would have expected.
It was burning red and cold as ice. It roared like an express train but was as silent as the beat of an owl’s wing in a midnight graveyard.
And I was in charge of a motor vehicle. I did spin the car round. I did open up the engine like it’s never been opened up before. Suze didn’t even complain as she usually does when I take liberties with her motor. She was furious too.
Sadly as I do have a modicum of intelligence I wasn’t able to catch up with the fuck-wit in the Peugeot. Even in that state of explosive rage part of me had enough restraint to back off the gas.
When we got to the pub I was tempted to order a double whisky to calm my seething mood, but as I was driving … common sense is a bitch.
You have to think about the reason I was angry. The car’s insured, so no loss there. I’m not afraid of death, it happens to us all and when my time comes I’m not going to stretch it out and lament the things that might have been.
What I can’t countenance is being without Suze. Losing her would destroy me because she is a part of my life that could never be replaced. Waking up one morning and finding her gone would leave a shard of pain, sorrow and loss in my heart that would bite and cut at my very being with every thought I had, everything I did for the rest of my life.
What would be worse is knowing that I might shuffle off this mortal coil and leave her on her own. She’s a big girl and knows how to look after herself but I can’t imagine not being there for her, to support and encourage her when she needs it.
I first realised all this when we had an accident on the motorway in 1996. A tyre blew out on the way back home after a day out and the car spun out, almost turning over. The car was a write-off and we both knew that we had come very close to dieing.
So Mrs Peugeot driver, although I doubt you’re reading this I have a message for you. Sell your car and get on the bus. You’re fucking dangerous and one day are going to kill someone. If that were just yourself then the world would be a better place but you’ll probably take someone with your and that is unforgivable.
There. I feel better for that.