This conventional wisdom that your life flashes before your eyes in a time of peril--well, it just doesn't happen, at least not to me. What flashed before my eyes was a bright yellow car.
OK, here's the scene. I had decided to take the two "orphan" cats to have their claws trimmed. (I call them orphans because these are the two we rescued a bit more than a year ago. Both had been found somewhere outside--separately. But, to distinguish them from our other cat, I just use the shorthand--orphans.) Anyway, their claws get quite...sharp, so a trim was in order. We loaded them into their respective carrying cases, and--since the one cat gets car-sick--my husband said, take my car (a smooth riding Ford Fusion). Regretfully, as it turns out.
I drove carefully, trying not to trigger the cat's car-sickness. I looped around a local store, using a road that leads to the pet place, and pulled up at a traffic light. When the light turned from red to green, I followed several other cars as we moved forward. When I was halfway into the intersection, suddenly, from my right, I saw a flash of yellow. A car moving way too fast to stop at the light that had to be red for the driver. I had no time to do anything, not even brake. I think I turned just a bit to the left, hoping not to hit him.
But hit him I did, smacking into his driver side with a hard BANG. He then turned his car to the right, pulled off the road in a local restaurant parking lot, and I followed him. Two other cars followed me. As soon as I got out of the car, the other driver--a young man of about 30--asked, are you OK?
I was (so far, nothing else has popped up). And so were the cats. I called my husband, and told him what had happened. He called the local police who came and did a thorough investigation. The other two cars turned out to be witnesses whose first question was to me--are you OK? Then, one of the men went to the other driver and said, dude, you ran a red light. The young man was nonplused, indicating he was sure he had a green light. Well, no, you didn't.
Meanwhile, my husband drove over, gathered up the cats, and took them for their nail appointment. All's well that ends well.
But the ending is yet to come--on Monday, my husband will begin the task of calling the insurer.
The final coup de grace is this. We got a call this evening from the police who did the investigation and write-up. Seems the young driver not only ran a red light but was also uninsured.