Thursday, June 4, 2009

Stumbling Blocks and Bumped Bumpers

The other day I was heading out of a parking lot, turning left onto a busy five-lane road in the city. There was an SUV in front and a car behind. I need to tell you that I drive a red four-door car, so I’m not invisible on the road. The SUV was pulling into traffic, as there were no cars on our side of the road. Suddenly she whipped her vehicle into reverse and backed right into me. It wasn’t a hard bump, but shocking. A youngish driver jumped out and came to see the damage. “I didn’t see the other car coming toward me, I had no where to go.” Uh huh, yeah. Then, “I didn’t know you were behind me”. What??!!
Literally one day later, I was turning onto our side street from the middle turning lane of another five-lane street. I was behind a van. He took a chance and scooted to the side street in front of a fairly fast moving car. I waited till it was safer, and made my turn. I pulled into the side street where suddenly the van was slowing down. I wasn’t even totally onto the street, with cars coming extremely close to the back-end of my car, when the van whips into reverse and starts backing up! I leaned on my horn rather hard and the driver then decided to look to see if someone was behind him. He quickly put the vehicle back into drive and headed forward where he eventually made a U-Turn and went back to the main road.
Getting front-ended is not a common thing for me and I have to say that I do not follow too closely. Not that you could prove it by these two experiences unless you were there. Which gave me two object lessons for the week.
One, I need to be careful what I do, regardless of how pure my motives may seem to be. None of us live in a vacuum and everything we do affects someone else. We are taught not to cause our brother to stumble. We have to be careful not to back into him too.
The other object lesson was that things aren’t always as they appear. We are always so quick to lay blame on anyone and anything when things don’t go right. Police almost always ticket the car following behind when two cars bump their bumpers. In both cases, I was not in the wrong. Except maybe that I wasn’t using my superpowers to read the minds of the people that bumped into me.
I think everything is fine with my car. I have been more cautious while driving, which is a good thing. I am also trying to think about how my actions look to others because there is always someone watching, someone ready to accuse the Christian of being a hypocrite. I also need to be careful of the ‘blame game’, as I learned again just recently. Things definitely are not always as they appear.

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