A big bump in the road

I had a great bike, but this one sucks. This thing has got to be at least as old as I am. My butt hurts from the hard seat shoved up my crack, plus the extra weight I’m pulling doesn’t help either. I’m sorry dad for dragging you around on the dirt roads like this. If you were still alive I would hate to think of the road rash you must have by now.

 

I miss my bike…

 

 

I still remember that the driveway was empty. I still remember that feeling of dread that she was gone. If she had only waited a minute longer. If I only spent a moment more with her. It doesn’t matter what I would have said or did, it would have bought enough for her to see the Special Bulletin flash onto the TV and warn her, and then she would still be alive today.

 

But the driveway was empty, and then the first air siren startled me as it blasted through the morning air. I knew she said she had to go to the store before work. I don’t know for what or where but this is a small town and the closest store was Mitty’s Market. It was only about 5 blocks away. I rushed for my bike. It was right in the back yard only a few feet away. In hindsight, I should have gone inside and grabbed my cellphone but I wasn’t thinking clearly… How could I be so stupid?

 

I don’t even remember much of the trip there other than a single thought in my head, find mom. The firetruck seemed to materialize from nowhere and it missed me by only a few feet as I slammed on my breaks. My heart was racing and even the near miss didn’t fully register as I started huffing it again towards the market. Mitty’s was less than a block away, so I pushed it.

 

I don’t know what I was expecting. Maybe to see her pulling in because I thought I had somehow magically traveled faster than her car on my bicycle . I don’t know, but clearly I was wrong. I rode through the parking lot but I didn’t see her car.


What does it look like again? Black, four doors. It’s a Lincoln something-or-other? Shit! Nothing! Where else could she have gone?

 

Only after two more stores did I remember the cell phone. One was a convenience store and the other is the drug store across the street from it, both were nearby.


What’s her number again? I can use a payphone. Crap! I have a cellphone so I don’t have to remember numbers! SHIT! SHIT! SHIT!

 

On the way back home I had seen several more emergency and police vehicles darting around town, some not even local. There was clearly some huge commotion going on down near the school.


That’s the place they showed on the news. This is really real isn’t it?

 

Mom, or school?

 

The school was only a few more blocks away. Mom’s probably okay for now, right? I can just make a quick detour and check things out

 

If only I knew. If only I knew that by the time I got home that there would be a note waiting for me. If only I had had my cellphone with me I would have gotten any of the 7 phones calls from her.

 

Ali stay here! You forgot your phone. Gone to look for you.” It read.

 

She had come back while I was out. I had forgotten my phone at home but she hadn’t. I should have known she would have noticed things were wrong out there. She had a car radio after all. And all the stations would have been blasted out to her the same news as the TV, right? My heart sank and I fought the fears as I went inside and found the messages on my phone.

 

Bump! …That was a big one. I really do hate this stupid bike. Sorry dad.

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