Yesterday I was traversing between VCU’s two campuses, Snapchatting and texting and mulling why I’m getting a PhD when I really just want to travel (this was five days after returning from Denmark). I walk this route on a daily basis (or when it’s not above 80 degrees Fahrenheit), so I have it down flat. I always take East Main Street, and I typically cross to the right side of the road because there used to be construction outside the Jefferson, but as of yesterday the construction’s gone, so I can stay on the sidewalk on the left side of the road.
About a block from the Jefferson, there is an intersection with stop signs. Not stop signs for East Main, but for the side street whose name I don’t know, but I need to check tomorrow, because as the title of this post hints, I got hit by a car and I’m told I should report this to the police.
I pause at this intersection on this sunny day because there is a car stopped at the stop sign. A Cadillac to be exact. The Cadillac is stopped, I repeat.
I don’t look too closely at the driver, because the car is stopped, before I continue walking in front of the car to get to the other side of the road. In my journey to the other side, the driver decides to un-stop his car and I found myself being hit by a car.
I’ve always wondered what it would be like to be hit by a car. Since I walk everywhere, there’s been a few times I thought I might be hit (my mom is counting her rosary beads; actually, she’s not Catholic). One time in college, I crossed a street while a bus was coming, and it was a close call. The bus actually honked.
Then I found out I had dropped my phone.
And the bus ran over my phone.
I stared as the bus rolled away and revealed my phone in three pieces. Somehow my phone still worked after this. It was an enV3. I feel like an iPhone would not have survived.
Back to my traumatic collision: for always wondering how it would feel to be hit by a car, the only word I can come up with is “surreal.” My life did not flash before my eyes. What happened is, I felt a car pressing against my thigh. “Pressing” might be too light of a term.
The car couldn’t have been going more than 5 mph. Actually, maybe faster. But remember, physics. It had accelerated from 0 mph (because it was stopped!!) and gone about five feet, but suddenly I was on top of its hood like Jessica Simpson in a music video.
My liftoff did not last long. Thankfully, the car braked to a halt. Halfway into the intersection. And I am staring through the windshield at the driver. Some old man in a hat and a suit. He probably also uses a cane. And he looked outraged. Like, “What the hell are you doing?”
I wanted to shout, “YOU JUST CAR SLAMMED ME.”
Instead, his outraged countenance made me feel apologetic. Like, “I’m sorry I’m on top of your hood. I’ll get down now.”
I was also shaken up. I mean, that’s the only explanation. Because I crawled off the hood and limped (it was more like my regular walk, but with a new awareness of my frailty) to the sidewalk.
The man rolled down his window. He still looked outraged. He said something.
“I’m okay,” I said.
I don’t know why I said that. I mean, I think I was okay. But you sorta just hit me.
The more I think about this, I’m downplaying the fact a Cadillac struck me in broad daylight.
And then the man drove away. Yes, he drove away. In hindsight, this classifies as a hit-and-run. I think his license plate had 1089 at the end, but who am I to know? (My nonexistent lawyer is going to hate I wrote this.)
Anyway, everyone, please look both ways at the stop sign. I wonder if I’m going to have a bruise.