The Medina’s are notorious for driving with the pedal to the metal. Perhaps we find that passengers are less likely to be backseat drivers when their throat is wedged deep into their heart upon traveling at the speed of light.
Nothing irks me more than a shotgun rider who either can’t keep their thoughts quiet or are unable to stop stepping on the imaginary brakes. When I’m a guest in their car, I get in, strap on my seat belt and I shut up. All I wanted was the same courtesy. After all, the references to the speed of light are strictly exaggeration.
The morning of the phone call started off like any other Southern California morning. The sunrise was long gone, giving way to deep cerulean blue skies. It was all the invitation needed to put the top down on my bug. It was one of the promises I made to my daughter and myself when I bought my bug convertible…I would put down the top as often as I could, bad hair days be darned.
This was one of those days. High school graduation had taken place the day before. A 10-day trip to Italy was just two sweet days away. My son’s baby was a week late which meant that any moment a call might come. We didn’t know what we were going to do if that phone call didn’t come before it was time to board our plane.
Brie was both adamant that she didn’t want to postpone our trip, but at the same time highly anxious that we would leave before the baby was born. I played Pollyanna, assuring her everything would work out even as little whispers of doubt wafted around my ears.
Since worrying wasn’t going to change anything, I tried not to think about it. But as the countdown to our departure grew increasingly closer, the cavalier attitude was hard uphold.
On this morning, all concern was gone. In my purse was a list of last minute items to buy, the feeling of anticipation danced merrily between us when my phone began to ring. We both froze for a moment. My son’s smiling face flashed up in tune with the ring tone.
We both grabbed for the phone that sat securely in the cradle between us, not wanting to wait for Ms Bluetooth to get off her lazy bottom and answer the phone. Everything thing I taught my daughter about safe driving flew out the top. Common sense took back over and I quickly released my grip on the device.
How many commercials had I watched that talked about the dangers of cellphones and how quickly things could turn dangerous? How many lectures had I given to my daughter, droning on and on until her eyes would roll to the back of her head? Could it really be that we would become one of these sad, sad statistics?
My eyes met hers. Could she read the apology in them mixed with sadness and disbelief? There were still a million things I wanted to say to her. There were still hundreds of things on her life list. Would these go unfulfilled. Yes, we could say them in Heaven, but would it be the same? Why did these even seem important right now?