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THE VAN


THE VAN

An awful event occurred last night and the worst of it keeps replaying in my mind.


I’d just pulled into a parking spot at a local store and sat with my car idling while I looked something up via the mighty Google before heading in. My windows were down a tad and I heard screams. A minivan (loathe) tore around the corner with a young woman somewhere between eighteen and twenty-eight in age I guesstimate, clinging to the top. She held to the roof rack runners, laid out flat on her torso, legs splayed with bare feet flailing to and fro, I imagine due to flip-flops flying off at some point along the way. She wore khakis and a forest green crew shirt and screamed and yelled “Stop!” continuously.

My initial assessment was this was one of those foolish pranks most often played by youngish people- a stunt that freaks out nearby witnesses intentionally only to later be aired on Youtube. Why else would she be on the top of the vehicle? I saw a handful of standers-by appearing disturbed, with one guy on the phone looking after the van. I paused a moment to check my head and heart. Justice is a HUGE deal with me and can have me ready to take up another’s battle all too quickly at times. I took off after the van in my car having watched it leave the parking lot and head up a hill into a nearby neighborhood. I didn’t know if I’d catch up or not, I just knew her voice sounded wrong for a prank, and nobody else was driving after them.


As I headed up the hill, I rolled the windows down all the way so I could listen, looking left and then right as I began to pass roads that turned off to other streets. I found her by her screams at the next turn. “Found her by her screams,” this should not be. Up another incline in a cul-de-sac filled with more trees than houses was the van veering in circles, the woman’s body now teetering on the roof’s edge. Another sharp turn caused her body to tumble down the passenger’s side, bouncing off the window. Her hold broke and she fell to the ground hard on her bum and left elbow. She cried out repeatedly as the van continued moving. I don’t know how she wasn’t hit. She tried to dodge the front wheels but then tumbled under the van partially and barely rolled back out again just before the back tires would’ve hit her. I’m in the happiest shock one can be in- I just don’t know how she wasn’t rolled over. It all happened in a flash. She lay there slumped on her side wailing as the van made its way down the hill towards me. Uh, yeah. I was scared and I’m angry about that. Yet, grateful. Without fear acting as a balance, my anger would surely go bananas at times and I don’t ever wanna be one of those people that flies off the handle and lives a life of regret over a moment’s indulgence in a base emotion. Or worse, doesn’t live that life of regret because they didn’t live to see the next moment.


Instinct said block the vehicle from exiting the cul-de-sac, but I didn’t like the idea of keeping this victimized person so close to her attacker with them still behind the wheel. With short hair, a stocky build and tinted windows, I thought it was a man driving and I feared the possibility of more people in the vehicle and moreover, those people having guns. Oh, were I only impervious to bullets. I saw a roundabout ahead and pulled forward with a plan to circle it allowing the van to go on their way with me circling back around behind them. The goal, the license plate number which remained infuriatingly obscured and unclear. I did this only because a couple walking along caught the latter portion of what was happening and ran to the woman’s side freeing me to do so.


The van was gone. I heard no acceleration, and didn’t understand where the heck it vanished to. There were three immediate roads it could’ve turned down so I chose one and began the search. Did it pull in somewhere along a house as though it belonged there and I passed it somehow? I gave up the hunt and headed back to the woman. The aforementioned couple remained at her side and another woman stood talking on a phone. The victim still lay slumped on the ground repeating her story in sobs, her shirt bunched up exposing her back where a long gash had opened and was bleeding along with her elbow and her heels and toes.


It turns out the driver was her mom. HER MOM.

The woman shared that her mom had just come from a grocery store across the street where “they” (whomever “they” were, I know not) had stolen a bunch of stuff before heading over to the store I’d pulled into, where the daughter- this injured woman- and her children (!) saw her and confronted her, knowing she’d steal from there as well. It obviously escalated physically, what with her ending up on top of the van in trying to stop her mom. I fully understand rage and foolish actions stemming from that rage, yet, it’s usually a rather quick uprise and some form of rationality takes hold soon enough even if anger continues. This crazy-arse woman willfully terrorized her daughter for an extended period of time past any such claim of rage (not that it’d be justified AT ALL due to a claim, just the tiniest bit more understood.) She also didn’t stop in an attempt to NOT run her over, and in fact, looked as though she were actually trying TO run her over. Insane.

I don’t know what was true or not in the story shared, nor that family’s history together. I do know any provocation on the daughter’s part didn’t deserve the level of absurdity this lady took it to. The police soon arrived, and the children were found and told their momma was alive. Those poor sweethearts. I wish I knew the family’s name and an address to send some kindness to them via the mail.


I’m running away to the Hoh (Hoe or Hah? Must find the pronunciation, I don’t remember) Rainforest shortly- it’s been several years- with Shannon where we’ll traipse through the woods with a hope for adventure. I’m wishing for it to be generally bright and lovely and feel like beginnings despite my usual proclivity for rain and a definitive mood.

#JUSTICE #MOM #RAINFOREST #VAN #VICTIM #WHATTHEWORLDNEEDS #NOW