Light snow flurries spun around the Volkswagen as I zoomed up the freeway toward home in the dark early morning. The four-lane had little traffic, and soon I’d be home — an unheated trailer off the end of the jet runway of St. Louis International. I was tired.
Just past the crest of a hill, I drifted to the left, then started to enter the leftmost lane. That’s when it happened.
From behind, over the hill at high speed came flying a dark sportscar. There was hardly time to see.
Quickly I steered back to the right, opening up the left lane, but the sportscar went into the metal guardrail, skidding past me down the center median, with a loud scraping of metal, a shower of sparks flying into the air.
The sportscar stopped. The other cars and I flew past, too quick to see clearly. I slowed, pulling to the right. How to get back?
Already a quarter mile down the road, I looked for an exit, thinking to find a phone, or drive back around. Upon the overpass, I stopped my car and stood in the chill air, looking back up the road. Almost a mile away, I could already see flashing lights.
Nothing more to be done. I drove home. Nothing more to be done.
I was afraid. Was the wreck my fault? Was the sportscar totalled? Was the driver hurt? Dead? What made him plunge into the guardrail? What had happened?
I’ll never know. Nothing to be done. Best to forget it, I thought.
But you don’t forget. Still riding through time, remains an image of the small car flying past, a shower of sparks, and then gone.