In the blink of an eye 

I was later than I had planned when I got home. I was about to leave work early when my brother came on line and so I had a quick chat with him about flights and dates and injections. Thailand has not caught up with the currently trend (in Australia at least) to get booster shots to protect babies from the threat of infection before their own vaccination has kicked in, so I was chatting to him about that as well as pick up times for his flight.

This may seem a little premature, but with my assignment due on the 4th December, the rest of this month is going to fly. Then it will be a week before the boys arrive and before we know it 2016 will be consigned to history – thank goodness.

I should not wish time away. It is a precious thing, as I was reminded today. When I got home I saw that the dogs had already been for their afternoon walk, but that did not stop them angling for another excursion. I had taken them around the big park in the morning and they had been to the smaller one with my husband. I decided, then to walk them around the block, maybe take them down a side street and up the hill, then around in a rough rectangle.

This seemed to be a happy compromise, even though the first side street I was heading down is one of my least favourite in the area. It does not exactly have kids playing on burnt out vehicles, but there were a couple playing on a trailer. Still the air was warm and the sunlight was soft. It was a lovely evening. We got to the top of the hill and swung left and then I had to make a decision about which street to turn left into. I finally chose one that we almost bought a house on, and began to head home.

Halfway up the road I noticed a big Alsatian being walked towards us on a lead, so before Archie had a chance to act up, I crossed over and walked past the dog and its owner, who kept him on a short lead as we made our way up the road. Another hurdle overcome, I thought.

The final part of the walk I needed to keep my wits about me a bit as there is no pavement and neither dog wanted to walk on the grass. I have to admire, I felt a bit of relief as I turned left for the last time for the few hundred metres to my house.

There was an odd noise, or series of noises. The weird thing was that I took them all in within a split second, but it felt like I was unraveling their meaning over the course of a few minutes.

There was a dog barking, some men shouting, a car horn and the most awful screeching of metal on stone. Coming towards me and the dogs, at speed, was a car which had been travelling on the opposite side of the road and had now crossed over lanes and mounted the verge.

The man behind the wheel was trying to control the vehicle, and I was trying to get myself and the dogs to a driveway and behind a pillar in case he failed. The noise was coming from the underside of his car scraping along the kerb as he travelled at first with one set of wheels on the road and the other on the grass, then all four wheels travelling towards the grass, then thankfully with two wheels back on the road as he wrestled his car out of his over correction.

His brief trip towards us had allowed him to miss a full head-on collision with an oncoming truck -the source of the beeping. The shouting was from a group of men who were standing, beers in hand, and who were passing comments that suggested the beers were not their first of the day.

The driver of the truck had parked up in the mouth of my driveway and walked back down to check the driver of the car, which had now come to a halt. I suspect that the car that nearly took me out in trying to avoid a head on smash himself, had been overtaking on the hill and then not been able to pull back into his lane, so kept going, ending up on the grass.

Thankfully no one was hurt – although the underside of his car may be wrecked, but when I think of what might have happened, I am just pleased that this time at least, we got away with it and live to tell another tale.


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