Woman furious when husband parks new car under trees during hurricane and car is crushed

Mary Duncan

*This is a work of nonfiction based on actual events I experienced firsthand; used with permission.*

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Photo by Izzy Edey on Unsplash

My grandparents were married for nearly sixty-five years before my grandfather passed away in 2020.

They had a beautiful relationship - they were high school sweethearts who were separated when my grandfather joined the Navy and left home, but eventually they married and had a wonderful life together.

When I was a kid, my mom and I lived with my grandparents for many years so I got to watch their relationship and knew that it was how I wanted my own relationship to be in the future.

They never fought, they never went to bed angry at each other, that was a rule of theirs, and they kissed and hugged and said ‘I love you’ multiple times a day, even when they were old.

Except for that one time when my grandfather did something that enraged my grandfather so much, she didn’t talk to him for over a week.

The year was 1991.

My grandfather had just purchased a new car, a 1990 Volkswagen Rabbit convertible, and both of them loved cruising in that car.

Then came Hurricane Bob.

When the storm was really ramping up my grandmother begged my grandfather to move the car to the top of the driveway, away from where it was usually parked, under trees and a flag pole.

But that would have required him going out into the storm and moving his truck out of the way to make room for the Rabbit, and for some reason that I never understood, he didn’t want to, and wouldn’t do it.

Does it surprise you to hear that the worst thing that could happen did eventually happen during the hurricane?

The wind whistled and howled outside, and we huddled in the living room, watching out the windows as the trees swayed and groaned… and then one eventually cracked, crashing down directly on top of my grandparent’s new Rabbit.

We watched in shock as the tree crushed the top of the car, breaking the windshield into a million pieces, and then my grandmother gave her husband one steely look and stomped out of the room, slamming her bedroom door behind her.

My grandmother didn’t come out for the rest of the day, she wouldn’t come out for dinner or breakfast the next morning until my mom finally went in and brought her a sandwich at lunchtime.

“I don’t ever want to talk to him again!” she told my mom. “He should have listened to me!”

My grandfather apologized profusely through the door to the bedroom he wasn’t welcome in, but my grandmother wouldn’t talk to him for a week.

When she finally emerged, she was apologized to again and only said:

“I don’t ever want to talk about this again.”

As far as I know, she didn’t.

It was something that made her so enraged, she didn’t want to bring it up and she blocked it out, but I certainly remember.

What would you have done if your husband hadn’t listened?

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

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