Thursday, April 29, 2010

Small Things In The Road

Driving on 11th Street this morning, I waited at a light (I think near Irving). As the light changed, I got ready to move, put my car into gear, and heard a cry from a child on the side of 11th. I glanced to my right just in time to see a child no more than 2 feet tall stride directly in front of my car.

I could literally only just see his head above the hood of my car. He was no more than a foot in front of me. If I had a bigger car I might never have seen him at all. If I hadn't heard his friend calling for him, I might never have looked to my right before starting off when the light changed. He was marching directly across the road in front of a green light.

I don't know what made him decide to cross just as the light turned. There was no crossing guard. A few other kids were on either side of the road. I formed some theories in my head. Perhaps he had gotten in a fight with his friend, and broken ranks. I watched the child stride across the road with such determination and purpose. His head never moved from it's forward stance. He looked straight across, the traffic lights, cars, and other kids crying out for him to stop, ignored.

This was a solemn reminder of the importance of everyone on the road taking as much care as possible all the time. This child was in the wrong place at the wrong time. He was lucky because I had my windows rolled down, heard his friend, saw him. He could have been unlucky. He would not have survived being driven over by something that had no idea he was there. A bicycle, too, could have caused him grave injury, so small was his size. Most people don't look for things that are about 2 feet tall in the road.

Take care out there no matter what the circumstances, no matter what you're riding in or on. Accidents don't just happen when you are speeding or running through red lights, they can happen when you are stopped too. Look out for things that haven't yet learned how to keep themselves safe.


Unknown said...

potentially heartbreaking, but thank heaven you were paying attention.

Christin said...

Good thing you were being a safe driver.

Kris said...

Thanks for posting this. When first in line, I always count to 4 after the light turns green and before stepping on the gas pedal... The practice has saved me and others. I just have to tune out the honking from the cars behind me.

Unknown said...

Jamie, I wanted to send you an email. This blog grabbed my attention because I was actually run over crossing the street.