Articles

eyes wide open

In recollections, stories on June 17, 2006 by carinasuyin

There was an Iswara in front of me, awaiting traffic to ease on the opposite lane so that it can turn into the housing estate on the right. I was in my Kancil waiting for the Iswara to turn so that I can move on. The traffic on the left was too heavy for me to switch lanes. Oh well, it’s just one car; I’ll just wait. My eyes darted between the front car, the right lane traffic and the rearview mirror. Suddenly, everything that happened next unfolded as if in slow motion. A car was fast approaching from behind but something was amiss. It didn’t seem to slow down nor signal to switch lanes. My heart raced, hands gripped the sides of my car seat tight, eyes transfixed on the rearview mirror and the pair of bright growing headlights. No, no, no way… stop. SSSTT…

As the car slammed into mine, my eight beanie bears on the dashboard flew like confetti and the backseat became a mess of files, notes and clothes. As I watched two big burly men alight from the Iswara in front, I felt like I lost my brains for awhile. I got out of the car, feeling weak in the knees and looked at the car behind. Great, another Iswara. Why didn’t you stop? I felt my own voice tremble exasperatedly as I faced a dazed-looking man flushed pink in the cheeks. “Mei pan fa, xiao jie. Mei pan fa,” he said repeatedly with an irritating silly smile. Excuse me, no choice? Mei pan fa? One of the two men from the front Iswara came up angrily and demanded to know what happened as the other inspected their car. In the blur of car horns and a heated flurry of Mandarin and Cantonese, I remember staring at my poor Kancil all banged up front and back, sandwiched between two perfectly unscathed Iswaras.

Traffic was fast building up on both sides of the trunk road. No signs of pesky tow-truck operators. Pheww. I had to borrow one of the burly men’s mobile phone to call Atah as my phone battery conveniently died ten minutes before the accident. My Kancil thankfully could still start. After a short exchange of instructions with the intoxicated idiot and some words of thanks to the kind burly men, I drove my Kancil to the nearest police station, chanting the idiot’s vehicle car plate number to the accompaniment of painful clanking engine sounds and a mental replay of colourful flying bears.

Sometimes at night when sleep eludes me, I lie awake and that incident a few years ago returns in a perfectly vivid but odd recall. I can feel my chest tighten and hands grip an imaginary car seat as the mind fixes itself upon the anticipation of being hit. An imminent crash. Except I can’t see any oncoming vehicles or bright headlights. No rearview mirror. Just a huge sigh and eyes wide open.

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3 Responses to “eyes wide open”

  1. Luckily you are unhurt and the two cars were not part of a scam.
    I’ve been hit twice at the back before and it was a scary experience. Especially the first time, when I just got my license (about 2 weeks). I was slowing down at a speed bump and the car behind me rammed into mine.

  2. Two underaged teenagers on a motorbike rammed into my Kembara while I reversed out of the house in Skudai. Just imagine the horror when I found them lying on the road without any helmets on their heads đŸ˜‰

  3. the soothsayer: Yeah, no major injuries but my right wrist and neck ached for awhile after the accident.

    meng teck: Kelakarlah the way you described it, hope they were okie… Wonder siapa lebih traumatised, you or them? hee…

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