Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Witnessing a Spectacular Moment...

For just one moment, one snapshot of the day, one spectacular moment, time stands still and YOU witness it!

Years ago, while I was living in Houston, Texas, I was on my way to a doctor's visit. I was much younger and I drove much more agressively then.
Well, I had keep from getting trampled on I-10. I found out quick that you have to be agressive to "hang" with Houston drivers.
Anyway, I was running late for my visit, so I was kind of riding the bumper of the Mercedes Benz in front of me. I know, I know....if I had a redo, I would have put a little space between their back bumper and my front bumper.
We came to a traffic light and it turned red, the Mercedes Benz stopped quickly, therefore I did the same. The light turned green and I was reving to go and started up right on their bumper. As the Mercedes went through the intersection, a pickup truck came blasting through the red light smashing right into the Mercedes Benz .... within inches in front of me. Time stood still and the vehicles spinning around looked as if they were in slow motion. I jumped out of my car and ran to the Mercedes and tried to open the driver door. As I was finally able to get the door open, a young teenage boy emerges from the passenger side and looks at the car. I am saying to the woman "Are you ok?" The young guy yells out "MOM, LOOK WHAT YOU HAVE DONE TO THE BENZ!" Someone else ran over to the pickup truck...thank goodness, no one was seriously hurt. However, the Benz was mostly totalled.
This happened right before my eyes. Just think, if the car in front of me had gone through the traffic light right before it turned red, it would have left me there to be the first car coming through the intersection once we got the green light! That could have been me in that accident!!

I had dinner with my parents the other night. My dad told me two stories that were fascinating....So, if you can stick around for a few minutes, I will try to be quick.

Dad and his friend Jim joined the Air Force at the same time. Fast forward to the end of the Korean War. Jim was a Reconnaissance fighter pilot, flying an RF-80, which means he flew with cameras instead of guns. To meet the critera of being able to go home from the war, the pilots had to fly 100 missions. Jim had flown 99 missions. North Korea, China and US signed a peace treaty. The day after the war was declared over, he was given his last mission to complete, then he could be on his way home. He was assigned to fly over China to take pictures in grid formation to see which direction the Korean military was moving.
That was probably one of the biggest risk flights he had been assigned to, since China was totally restricted.
Remember, he only had cameras, no weapons.
He flew into the China airspace, took the photos, turned around and started flying back. All of the sudden, here come THREE RUSSIAN MIGS chasing him. The Migs were used by China and were much faster than the RF-80, but his plane was a bit faster than normal since it was not loaded down with artillary and weapons.
Ok, that would be the only good thing about not carrying guns!
He had the pedal to the metal and couldn't go any faster, so he went low. He was flying as low as he could possibly fly.
About the time he reached the Yalu River, he passed by some Australians manning the artillery on the River.
They radio'ed up to Jim saying: " 'Ello Mate, I say, did you know you have 3 Migs on your ars?" Jim radio'ed back and said, "Yes, I know they are on my ars, can you get them off?"
They replied, "Most definitely will try".
All ended well except once he returned home, he was diagnosed with Ileitis. Imagine that?
Can you only imagine if you had been one of the Australians that witnessed the RF-80 skimming across the river being chased by 3 Migs? Wow!!!!!

Ok, time for one more?

My dad is very dedicated in his excercise. He walks/jogs, swims and plays golf daily. It is a rare day when he misses a workout.
I think that is why he looks 10 years younger than he is.
Anyway, one day he was running in his quiet neighborhood on the sidewalk. An SUV was coming toward him (not too fast, maybe 30 mph). The driver bent down to pick something off the floorboard.
While doing that, he hit the curb, which caused the vehicle to flip and all of the sudden, Dad saw this vehicle flying (sort of low to the ground) straight toward him.
He bent down as low as he could go and ran as fast as he could.
The next thing he turned around and saw it hit the fence and ground directly behind him! OMG! In a flash of time....time stood still and he witnessed this vehicle flying over him. He was inches from sure death! Unbelievable!
He ran over to the vehicle and the guy was sitting up straight with big eyes looking stunned.
Dad asked if he was ok and the guy said "yes, but I think I have ruined my car."
Dad found out the guy had just bought his vehicle brand new 2 days before.

Thanks for sticking around to the end of my three mini stories.
Spectacular moments in time....time that stands still long enough for you to witness. There are very few moments in a lifetime that one will witness a spectacular snapshot of time.
Do you have one to share?

Have a wonderful day!


Rebecca said...

I have one..but I'm not nearly the writter you are. My mom and i were talking a walk..she doesn't normally so it was a big deal. We were walking up this little side street near out local hospital. Not a busy street and in a pretty good neighborhood. I had to stop and tie my shoe so we stopped for just a moment. Good thing. A drunk driver did a donut in the road as to not miss his turn on to the street we were on and loses control. He flys inches past us, me still looking down, and hit the building.

If my shoe stayed tied that would have been us.

I'm sure we all have these types of stories..not nearly as intresting as your dad's. He sounds like a wonderful man..

Rebecca said...

oops with the spelling as usual..taking a walk...not talking.....see not a writter

EBEZP said...

They are pretty awesome stories aren't they? Makes you think doesn't it?
Not so much stories like that but isn't there always people you know that should have been somewhere and weren't.
My brother in law was flying out to the Piper Alpha oil platform and missed the heli connection. He lost 12 of his mates in the explosion on the accommodation platform and he was moaning because he was going to lose money because he missed the flight.

I know at least 6 people who started off to go to Hillsborough when 96 people died at a football match and their mini bus broke down so they went to the pub, as you do and watched the disaster unfold on the tv.They all had tickets in the end of the ground where the people died.

I know thats side tracked a bit - sorry but it is quite a fascinating topic.
(If it's not your time, you won't be called.)

EBEZP said...

21 March tomorrow First day of Spring and all that, Free Iced coffee at Dunkin Donuts. True.
We've not got DD over here but the press release is on mine if you want to see it!!
Tell your friends.

Gyrobo said...

I sometimes take hours out of my day to enjoy a good sandwich.

Rastaman said...

Great stories Babygirl!

Peace and hugs to you Babygirl

~ Rasta

Kirsten N. Namskau said...

Wow...that was some good stories. I don't know what kind of illness is "Ilietis" ( or how did you write it?)
I'm happy I have not experienced a war close up.

Mustafa Şenalp said...


Jason said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jason said...

All's well ends well.

I like old war stories. I used to know a man who told me the story of how he straffed two torpedos coming at his aircraft carrier. I asked him "were you nervous?" His answer; "naaw, I wasn't nervous! The guys on my carrier were nervous though!"

Good stories.

hotboy said...

Remember very vividly many things from boxing rings and such, but thank God I don't drive or fly a plane! Hotboy

Anonymous said...

I peed my pant hearing that last story. I flew a MIG in Nam.


Carmi said...

Your very eloquently written stories of survival speak strongly about how fate touches our lives in so many unexpected ways. I love how you write, and am so glad you shared these with us. You've definitely got me thinking!

My moment: I was 14. My sister was driving on the highway. She lit up a cigarette as we went under an underpass. We hit black ice and she freaked when the car jiggled a bit. She lost control of the car and we spun off of two concrete walls before bouncing to a stop in the middle lane. Miraculously, everyone behind us was able to avoid us.

Very little was left of the car, and we all walked away with nothing more that serious bumps and bruises. The cops who arrived on scene said they had never seen anything like it.

To this day, I have a massive amount of respect for the physics of motion: I've never had an accident.

Lee Ann said...

Rebecca ~ Excellent story, so glad you stopped to tie your shoe...*whew* Thanks for sharing that!

ebezp ~ Wow, incredible...He missed it! Very good story, thank you for sharing. Those people that missed the bus wreck, amazing! You are right, it wasn't their time to go.

Gyro ~ Just think if you have a few sandwiches a day, that could take up all of your time!

Lee Ann said...

Rasta ~ Thank you Rasta!
So now that the weather is nicer, when are you gonna tell about your next beach adventure? ;)
peace and hugs from Babygirl

Kirsten ~ Ileitis is An inflammation of the ileum which is the final section of the small intestine. Causes Abdominal pain
Abdominal tenderness
Bowel irregularity
Weight loss
Thickened intestinal wall. Sounds like a painful and nasty disease.
I am with you, so glad I have not experienced war upclose.

Jason ~ Thanks Jason. Yes, war stories are so interesting!

Lee Ann said...

Hotboy ~ I think the boxing thing you did is far more dangerous than flying or driving! I know I couldn't do it....I don't even like being spanked! ;)

Edge ~ So cool! You flew a MIG? I bet you have some awesome stories.

Carmi ~ Thank you so much. A compliment such as that coming from you means a lot to me. I do so enjoy reading your eloquently written posts. I empathize with the feeling you must have had while experiencing that incident. It does have a way of making you grateful for so many things that you had possibly taken for granted.

jiggs said...

It always freaks me out how close to death we are at any one time. Even those of us who aren't air force pilots could go in a snap.

Lee Ann said...

Jiggsy ~ Yes, life is more fragile than we think sometimes. Every so often, we are reminded of that!

JLee said...

wow! I'm sure I've had these moments but I can't think of any good ones right now! lol
Things that make you go "whew"

Mustafa Şenalp said...

I like your site very much. Thanks for your interest. Have a good day

Neo said...

Lee Ann - The only thing I can say to that wonderful story is that when the big guy upstairs calls your number you go. It wasn't your time, or your dad's or his friend.

But those moments tend to make us look at who/where we are in life. They are what I call second chances. Make the most of them, we don't know how much time we have in this place.

Have a great weekend.

Peace & Hugs,

- Neo

coach said...

i love your stories . they are always entertaining.

Michael Manning said...

I relate, Lee Ann. As kids,we had just finished a game of baseball and headed on our bicycles to a local shop that sold candy and soda pop. Afterwards, we got back onto our bikes and safely rode across the street when we heard tires screeching well behind us. We turned our heads in time to see one of our friends struck by a car. His right leg was shattered and he was in a coma for two weeks. I'm happy to say that by a miracle he survived and totally recovered. Today he is married and very happy working for a bank. He has barely aged. A terrific guy! This post reminds me never to take life for granted. Glad you wrote it. :)

Lee Ann said...

Jlee ~ I have a few more, but I didn't want to make the world's largest post, it was already longer than what most people want to read. Yes, "whew" is right!

Mustafa ~ thank you!

Neo ~ You are so right!
Hope you have a great weekend too!
Hugs Neo!

Coach ~ Thank you Coach, good to see you!

Michael ~ Thank you Michael. Wow, your story is incredible. Yes, you know the feeling most definitely.
Have a nice weekend.

rob said...

Are you saying your car pushed the Mercedes into the truck? ;-)

Glad you drive more laid-back now. Have another good weekend.

PS Sorry I've not been around recently.

rob said...

Maybe your dad looks young from babysitting you when you were a kid? ;)

rob said...

Those Aussies can sometimes be quite useful.

Lee Ann said...

Rob ~ Oh NO! I would never do that...but I was close to the bumper. :(
Babysitting can keep you young...or wear you out! ;)
It appears that Aussies can be quite helpful. All that I have met have been great!
Glad to see you Rob. Have a wonderful weekend.

rob said...


Cheri said...

I've been in an accident and it's one of the most awful things to happen to a person. Because you're right- time does slow down, and in those moments you have no idea if you're going to live or die. Right before my head slammed into the steering wheel (yay for an old car without airbags) I remember thinking that I was going to die. I woke up to a kid with a mohawk trying to pry my door open, and the woman who caused the accident saying over and over, "I didn't see her," tapping on the glass.

Great blogs, btw. I came across it from my friend Jim's blog and just wanted to say hi. =D