Just one minute earlier.

If we had left the house one minute earlier,photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/grand_canyon_nps/8034053964/">Grand Canyon NPS</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a
we would have got to the roundabout,
before the jeep.

If I had not had to look for my keys,
or go back for my phone,
I might have been that one minute earlier.

Or maybe earlier in the day,
if I had not got that phone call,
or had trouble finding my shoes,
we might have been one minute earlier.

Instead as we drove away,
one minute later,
we gave way at the roundabout.
The jeep pulled out ahead of us.
For today was the day he was one minute earlier.

And then we watched,
as the car with the driver who fell asleep,photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/christopherivie/2956237045/">Christopher Ivie</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/">cc</a>
left his side of the road.

We watched without a word,
as he continued to drive,
oblivious of direction or speed,
into the path of the jeep in front.
The one who was one minute earlier.

Because we were one minute later,
we were the next in line.
The ones who saw it all unfold in slow motion.
The ones who got away without a scratch.

Thankfully there was no tragedy here.
The jeep was a strong four by four,
with no passenger on board.
The sleeping driver was saved,
by the fast reactions of the man in the jeep.
Two cars were a right off.
But no one badly hurt.

I was next in line,
driving a car which was not as big as a jeep.
My youngest daughter was in the back.
Thankfully today, for whatever reason,
we were running one minute late.

Maybe it was not our time.
But it makes you think.
Life really sometimes is just a lottery.

Today we hit the jackpot.
He was on time.
We were one minute late.
Who knows what I would be writing,
if in fact today we were on time.

photo credit: Grand Canyon NPS via photopin
photo credit: Christopher Ivie via photopin cc

37 thoughts on “Just one minute earlier.

  1. Had something like this happen to me many years ago. I was coming out of parking lot to get on the main road, it was a 4way intersection with a signal light at the middle. I let this young lady go in front of me because that’s what gentleman do. Light turned green and she pulled forward. In an instant this car came out of nowhere, traveling well over 80mph, and it t-boned this lady’s car. The impact sent the car tumbling/flipping down the road and it killed the young lady instantly. I thought to myself, that death should have been me…

    1. Oh wow. How awful. Not something you get over in a moment. How do you make sense of it? A good friend of mine went out one night and as they all got into the taxi they just sat where ever. The taxi later crashed into a tree and the boy in the back by the window was killed instantly. Not a scratch on any of the others. I thought about that yesterday. Happy to be posting today!

    1. Yes. My youngest was a bit upset at the time but I was explaining to her that although she witnessed something very scary, she should appreciate we got away scot free. Your family will think you’re cracked but give them a good hug anyway.

  2. Just another reminder of the importance of being vigilant, keeping a safe distance, etc. – The biggest dangers on the road are other drivers.

    1. I must admit I do think of it occasionally but this was a real moment. Such a contrast between much ado about nothing and something major.

  3. Wow…close call! We have just gotten those “roundabouts” in our town and I’m petrified of them! I avoid them like the plague! Glad everyone got out unscathed!

    1. We have a gazillion roundabouts over here, so they are no bother to us. The accident happened not actually on the roundabout but on a straight road just after it.

  4. I remember feeling this way when a teenaged driver ran a stop sign. Had I been 10 feet farther and my preschooler in the car . . . I shudder. Glad you’re all ok.

  5. I’m so glad that everyone is safe! What a difference a minute makes. I once narrowly missed being knocked down by a car – the green man had come on, and I had paused for a moment before crossing. Just as I was about to step out, a car zoomed out of nowhere and missed me by inches. I still shudder to think what would have happened if I had been earlier by a few seconds.

    1. It looks like so many of us were moments away from disaster at some time, but thankfully we were in the right place at the right time.

  6. Glad you’re safe. I understand the way you feel. I came to the same conclusion on the M27 when I was in my early twenties, when a driver going in the opposite direction lost control of his car, hit the central reservation and literally took off. I saw his car flying through the air towards me, then slowly descending and disappearing from sight above the roof of the car. He landed on his front bumper between my car and the car behind me, then rolled on to the emergency lane. It was literally a question of seconds that separated life from death for me.

    1. Oh wow. How very frightening. And then we get into a car and drive on! That was definitely your lucky day. Even telling someone does not really capture how close you came I’m sure.

  7. OMG! I’ve been the one that was “one minute earlier” and “one minute later”…in 62 yrs. I’ve experienced both. I’m thankful to be able to say “I lived to talk about it”…You never know…God does.

    1. Glad you made it through the one minute earlier! Life really is a game of chance. As I have got older I think it is often a matter of luck that I survived my teenage years, as I made so many ridiculous choices.

  8. Ohh chills on my freshly shaven legs darnnit lol. It really makes you think about all those times your were late, early, took an alternate route, etc. Was it fate intervening, helping you to avoid a mishap? Or sometimes fate drives you right into the middle of it. I’m glad you were late and everyone is ok. And also another word to the wise-never drive faster than your guardian angel can fly. Oh and don’t sleep when you are the driver lol

    1. I love that “never drive faster than your guardian angel can fly”. It makes you think alright especially after reading the comments about close escapes.

      1. Sometimes you don’t realize the little things. The people you’ve met, who have touched your life in a positive or negative way, the things you’ve gone through.. It has all happened for a reason!
        .. it’s for a reason that someones “stronger” car was able to take the hit for you! 🙂
        Makes you appreciate the little things in life!

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