Years ago woman crashes car into a bridge and thinks she loses her friend

Mary Duncan
Photo by Evan Phillip on Unsplash

*This is a work of nonfiction based on actual events as told to me by a friend who experienced them firsthand; used with permission.*

I spent most of my early twenties with my friend Angela, driving around in her red Toyota Celica’s passenger seat because once she got her license and that sweet car she always wanted to be the one to drive.

Alas, Angela was not a great driver.

She repeatedly got pulled over and was issued warnings in the same spot by the same police officer in her town for rolling through a stop sign.

She got countless speeding tickets on the highway on her way to work.

She was know for being the person who would bump her car into curbs and safety cones and sometimes even other cars.

One night, or maybe very early in the morning, we were together at a party and she drove me home.

After dropping me off at my house, Angela left to travel the seven or so miles to her house and in that time, at the most inopportune time, she drifted off to sleep.

It was just as she was crossing an intersection with the side of a bridge directly in front of her.

The bridge had a low concrete barrier and a chain link fence atop that, and when Angela crashed, she really did a number on everything.

The hood of her car smashed into the concrete side of the bridge, part of the fence fell down into the water, her windshield shattered and her air bag deployed, and when she came to she panicked - because she thought that I was still in the car with her when she crashed.

Apparently, despite scrapes to her face, arms, and legs from the air bag, she crawled out her driver’s side window because the door wouldn’t open, and cut her leg badly doing so, all because she thought I had been flung from the car and my body was floating in the river.

When police and ambulances finally arrived, she was screaming my name over the edge of the bridge, crying and thinking she’d killed me.

Rather than send a boat and team to start dredging the river, they called my house at about four in the morning in the time when landlines where still a thing, and confirmed that I was safe at home while informing me my friend was on her way to the hospital.

I got up and met Angela at the emergency room and she had never been so happy to see me, or probably anyone, in her entire life.

You really find out how much your friends love you after they think you’ve gone flying off a bridge.

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I write about relationships and parenting, life, society, people, and sometimes also beer.

Connecticut State

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