BlogExplosion

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Honeymoon in Corsica: October 6, 1998

Le Maquis -- Porticcio, Corsica:

Wow...what to say?

Yesterday Rex and I took the ferry from Santa Teresa in Sardinia to Bonifacio on Corsica. From there, a woman taxi driver picked us up and started the 2 1/2 hour drive to Porticcio. Not 20 minutes into our drive, she tried to pass another car (or was it a bus?) on a curve, didn't make it back into her lane in time, hit an oncoming car and lost control of our taxi, swerving from side to side and eventually flipping our car over in the ditch on our side of the road. I didn't say anything the whole time... I was paralyzed with fear. Rex & I had both worn our seatbelts, which kept us safely hanging upside down from our seats. We undid our seatbelts and somehow crawled out the door of the car. I was bleeding from my elbow, which later required two stitches, but otherwise not a scratch.

I am thankful for so many little twists of fate: that we were not in a convertible, that we were not further along the road to Porticcio (we could have gone off a cliff), that I was not pregnant... so many little things that made the difference between life and death. I continue to pray, not certain who or what God is, but believing that someone is watching over us.

The ambulance and doctor came, oddly not very helpful...it was frightening to be in an accident in France, unable to communicate in French with most people (natives) unable to speak much English. The doctor and nurses were quite nice, very concerned that we not be afraid. The doctor stitched up my elbow, worried that it would sting -- after my brush with death, I was much more afraid to get into another taxi than I was of ANYTHING a doctor could do to me -- 2 stitches was nothing.

My greatest concern was for Rex. I did not want to be away from him. It seemed strange to me to know so quickly that I would be okay but not to know for sure what Rex felt. As it turned out, I think he was just shaken up, maybe even more than I was. As a woman, I am allowed and encouraged to express fear. As a man, I think Rex was grateful that I expressed enough fear for both of us. For example, I asked the policeman who took our report for the car insurance company, as well as the nurse who helped with my stitches, to explain (in French) to our new taxi driver what had happened, and that he must drive very slowly and not pass any other cars. I know that Rex felt exactly the same fear of the taxi, but only I am allowed to express it.

Such a strange feeling, very similar to when I got hit by the taxi crossing 42nd Street to FedEx two years ago (1996). My thoughts then and now have been that such a stupid mistake could have put an end to such a wonderful life...but didn't. So I am grateful for another chance.

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