Always Check Your Blind Spot
Two days earlier, on Saturday, Rachel was having the time of her life. But before we get to that part, there a few things you should know. Rachel’s family lived with Rachel’s grandmother since they were having their house rebuilt and wanted a place to stay where they didn’t have to pay rent. Rachel loved living in her grandmother’s house; it was spacious and clean and much nicer than any of the previous houses she’d lived in. But Rachel was also really excited to move into her new rebuilt house. Since the construction was almost finished, Rachel’s grandmother threw a little party on the Saturday our story begins as a farewell, even though Rachel’s new house was only a few blocks away. Rachel enjoyed spending time with her extended family, which is why she was having the time of her life. Most of her cousins were older and had children, and Rachel spent all day playing with the kids. Her grandmother had cooked a feast for the family which they all thought was delicious. But the best part was that because it was Saturday, there was no school. Rachel usually didn’t mind school so much; it was the fact that this class was during the summer that made it so hard to tolerate. Who wanted to sit in class when the weather was so amazing outside? Everyone loves spending time outside on a hot, summer day. Which is why when Monday morning rolled around, the day started out exactly the way it had for the whole semester – with Rachel forcing herself to get out of bed. No, she wasn’t getting up at the crack of dawn; yet, being summertime, 11 o’clock a.m. felt like dawn. She lethargically got dressed, took one look in the mirror and realized it was as good as it was ever going to get, and hurried downstairs before she gave in and climbed back into bed. She skipped breakfast, which was the normal routine in the mornings, grabbed a juicebox and left the house. Rachel lived about 10 minutes from the Long Island Expressway and the drive to the highway was uneventful this specific morning. She began to hope that the rest of my day would go as smoothly as her drive to the highway. Things started to get even better when she entered the highway and saw the traffic was moving well and it wouldn’t take her long to get to school. She breathed a heavy sigh of relief and turned on her left turn signal, changing lanes until she was driving in the fastest lane, closest to the divider on the highway. She was really enjoying this drive and had even started humming along to the songs she didn’t like on the radio. While changing stations on the radio looking for one she could actually enjoy, she noticed a car gaining speed in the lane to her right. The car didn’t seem threatening so she didn’t pay it any attention as it eventually caught up to her. Rachel didn’t realize that the car was trying to get into her lane but couldn’t because of her car. The car sped up until it was ahead of her but was still in the second lane. Unfortunately, Rachel ended up in the most dangerous spot she could possibly be: in the car’s blind spot. Suddenly and without warning, the car swerved into her lane. She honked multiple times, which she never does under normal circumstances, but it was too late. The only way to avoid crashing was to turn away from the car and into the highway divider. She turned her steering wheel to the left and waited for the impact of the crash. And yet, at the last second, the car next to hers realized what was happening and turned back into its lane. Rachel sharply turned the steering wheel the other way and narrowly missed the divider. And that, my friends, is the story of how Rachel almost died. Who knew so much could change in two days?
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