Damp – Incensed – Skid
It seemed as though it had been raining for weeks. I tried to keep my speed reasonable, given the damp roads and the way people tended to disregard the danger of driving on them. Still, it didn’t completely surprise me to round the next curve and begin a skid.
I know you’re supposed to turn INTO a skid to correct, but it’s always seemed so counterintuitive. Still, it was a good thing I fought my instincts, because the ridge over the Chagrin River was below and it was a good 200-foot drop.
I guess my brakes were wet, because for a heart-stopping moment, I thought I was going to be testing the strength of the guardrail. Finally, the car screeched to a halt about six inches this side of doomsday and I sat for a moment, breathing hard.
Thirty long minutes later, I pulled slowly into the driveway. Mike burst from the house, incensed. “Where the hell have you BEEN?”
Still shaking, I got out of the car, doing a great imitation of an octogenarian with Parkinson’s. “I almost didn’t get home.” I told him about my near-mishap, and he calmed down – I think. I was still shaking enough that I wasn’t completely sure of my surroundings.
He put an arm around me. “That’s too bad.” I glanced at him and saw a thoughtful expression on his face. We walked into the house and Mike carefully sat me on an armchair.
“So, you say the brakes were wet?”
“I guess so. Why else wouldn’t I be able to stop?”
“Sure. That makes sense.”
He left me for a moment to take a bottle of wine – no, champagne – out of the ice bucket, where it sat waiting.
“Champagne, Mike? What are we celebrating?”
“Just us, sweetie.”
He went into the kitchen, and I heard him fiddling through things for a bit. He came back with a glassful and handed it to me. “Here. Maybe this will calm you down.”
I don’t drink much because of my heart, but I figured this once it might help.
Mike watched me narrowly.
“Aren’t you going to join me?” I asked.
“I’ll have mine later. Just drink up. It’ll make you feel better real soon.” A slow smile spread over his face. Dear Mike. He always takes such good care of me.