Vivid Detail Reflections on a Close Call Term Paper

Pages: 4 (1418 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 0  ·  File: .docx  ·  Topic: Transportation

¶ … Vivid Detail

REFLECTIONS on a CLOSE CALL was sitting in my usual seat on the left side of the classroom when the professor interrupted his lecture to ask a question. Squinting against the bright sunshine beaming through the window to my left, I started to raise my hand but, for some reason, was completely unable to put my pen down. Curiously, I was holding it very tightly out in front of me, within my two closed fists, clutching it very tightly instead of in my writing hand; still, I was unable to release my grip to respond to my professor's question.

It was something I had never really noticed before, but my pen seemed much larger than normal, and it had numerous curved depressions in it, presumably to fit one's fingers. At the same exact moment that I found myself examining my peculiarly-shaped pen, the floor of the classroom began to vibrate and my chair started shaking, gently at first, but then much more roughly as it also started tilting to my left. Still, I could not let go of my strange pen; it was as though someone had crazy-glued it to my palms.

A opened my eyes just in time to see the highway disappear on the passenger side, and found myself at the wheel of my Jeep as it started sliding off the pavement and into the rough terrain of the ravine that separates I-80 West from I-80 East. My fingers were wrapped tightly, but around the steering wheel of my Jeep instead of a pen. I had fallen asleep behind the wheel.

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Instinctively, I jerked the steering wheel to the right to get off the highway shoulder, but by then, only my passenger-side tires were still on the shoulder because I had already begun drifting into the ravine, probably right about the time the professor in my dream finished the question I had hoped to answer. With more time to think about it, I would have known not to turn the wheel so sharply at highway speed, but how many people think clearly in an emergency situation, especially right after waking up? My reflexive reaction had made a bad situation even worse.

Term Paper on Vivid Detail Reflections on a Close Call Assignment

As soon as I turned the wheel back toward the highway, the vibration increased so dramatically that my body could no longer be described as shaking, but more accurately as bouncing in the driver's seat. My Jeep and I were now tilted at the same 45-degree angle as the side of the ravine, sliding sideways toward the bottom at 60 miles per hour. In the next instant, the sound of rough terrain disturbed at high speed became louder and louder, which is perfectly understandable, since it was now rushing by only inches from my head. Thank God that Jeeps come with roll bars as standard equipment. I now understand why. By then, my eyes were already very tightly closed, but it was probably the taste of the sun-baked sand that made me shut my mouth as well. The noise was absolutely deafening, perhaps similar to the sound of a blender filled with rocks and gravel. Heard from the inside. "They" always say that, in the moments before violent death, time slows down and one remembers one's entire life as it flashes before the mind's eye. "They" are half right: time does slow down. I realized I was about to die and expected the screenplay of my former life to simply "fade to black" at any instant.

Otherwise, my only conscious thoughts related to maintaining the tightest grip possible on the steering wheel to keep myself inside my open Jeep - more accurately, what had formerly been my Jeep - until the it stopped rolling, or until everything suddenly went black, whichever happened first. Nothing else about my life "flashed before my eyes" at all.

As quickly as it had all started, the violence was over; apparently, my life was not, thankfully. The deafening roar of rocks, and gravel - and whatever else makes up desert ravines between highways - flying by my head at 60 miles per hour was over, if not the taste of the gravel. My eyes and mouth were still closed very tightly, either as a reflex, or possibly… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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