Sunday, June 12, 2011

The Dump Truck

Last night, we took the kids to see the moosebutter show. Well, I did. Tim was in the show.

So we had two cars (my sister kindly lent me her van to get the kids there since our van was full of musicians).

After the show and the cleanup, Tim headed off through Provo to take the musicians to their sleeping quarters, and I headed down the freeway toward my sister's house, where we've been sleeping.

Right now, the stretch of I-15 through Provo, UT, is heavily under construction. There are cones everywhere, cement barriers hemming in traffic on both sides so there are no shoulders. There are many many sudden lane shifts, and just enough chaos, especially at night, that if something came up, emergency-wise, your reaction time is cut simply because you can't often see if something is in your lane or not, and it's hard to tell what is constructions work and what is traffic.

So I was driving down the freeway, and suddenly the lane I was in and the one directly to my right (the farthest right lane on the freeway at that point) were full of brake lights. So I slowed down, too, hoping we weren't coming up on a road closure. But no, just a really REALLY slow dump truck. Big, dirty, and just creeping along.

But there was a cement barrier all along beside that lane, with no exits in sight, so the dump truck couldn't be getting off anywhere to get to work. So it was just creeping along, being a nuisance?

As I passed the truck, I saw in front of it a little compact car with its hazards flashing, a single man behind it pushing with all his might. I assume it was his wife steering. Their car was obviously completely dead, and there was no way for them to get off the freeway to safety--no shoulder, no emergency pull off, and a mile to the next exit (or more!).

Behind them, not a nuisance, but a big, ugly, dirty guardian angel, creeping along knowing that if anyone didn't notice the brake lights and smashed into HIM, not much would happen--even at high speeds, a car wouldn't likely propel a heavily-loaded dump truck very far forward, but without him, there was very little chance the poor single small man pushing his car off the freeway would be noticed in time and not killed.

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