Friday, October 26, 2007

When Bad Luck Turns Out to Have Been a Blessing

This is a great example of the glass half-empty-or-half-full phenomenon.

Monday afternoon, driving back to Greencastle from Chatham, New York (where I performed our Rumi music/drama/dance gig on Saturday), I got off at the Greencastle exit. Just as I stopped at the light, there was a horrible noise from the passenger-side front wheel of my car. I thought perhaps I'd blown out a tire, and as I was stopping there was a screeching sound, as if I had slammed on the brakes.

It was disconcerting! When the light turned green, though, the car went ahead just fine. Maybe some gravel or something and kicked into the tire well, I speculated. Then as I started to slow down for the next light, as soon as a put a slight bit of pressure on the brake, there was a horrible noise and the brakes locked as the car screeched to a halt. Luckily there was little traffic. The car wouldn't budge for a while, but finally I was able to get it off on a side road, where eventually it was towed to Greencastle (just 7 miles) to be repaired.

At first I was upset that I had a big car problem, and that I had to reschedule a couple of lessons. About a day later it dawned on me how fortunate I had been. The brakes locked when I was stopping anyway, at the bottom of an exit ramp.

What if this had happened when I was driving almost 80 miles an hour on I-70? (The speed limit is 70 now in Indiana, which makes the de facto limit 80). That could have caused a major accident, perhaps seriously injuring me and others.

As it was, it happened not far from home, no one was hurt, and all's well that ended well. The more I think about it, the more I realize how extraordinarily fortunate I was.

1 comment:

Matt said...

As someone whose right front tire recently blew while he was driving 75 MPH in Iowa, I agree with your glass-half-full assessment. Car troubles are never convenient, rarely predictable, and basically never our own fault. They're a pain, but hey, you're done with yours for awhile! Your karma score is way up.

Glad the tour was good. "Most delicious" -- great quote!