Divine Intervention to the Rescue
Do you believe that you may be protected by something greater than you? God? The Universe? Divine Love? This belief requires a faith in the unknown. This blind trust isn't easy, but every once in a while I receive a sign that there is a protective force greater than me. I had just this type of experience over the Fourth of July weekend.
My friend, Heather spontaneously invited me to go to her family's home in the Adirondacks for the holiday weekend. I arranged the time off at work and packed my bags for a the trip. I was ecstatic to go, to leave the city, be in nature, and experience a different part of New York. The plan was to drive up with Heather's brother, Ben and his friend, Nick. On our departure day, the Friday before the 4th, all four of us met at Heather's apartment, packed the car, and hit the road, heading north.
Nick was behind the wheel. Surprisingly, there was little traffic as we left the city. We chatted about work, listened to music, and took in the scenery around us. Our one dilemma was whether we should stop for soft serve at Martha's, an iconic ice cream stand near Lake George. The decision was a unanimous yes.
As we continued on our way, I noticed Nick weaved around cars, cut people off, and we were traveling at a speed faster than other cars. I peeked at the speedometer and was shocked to see we were traveling a 100mph. Ben chastised Nick, "Dude, do you really need to go 100? If the cops pull you over, they could haul you to jail." Nick shrugged off the warning, saying, "You know how many accidents I've gotten into? Zero." Even weather would not deter Nick. The skies darkened at one point and let loose a torrential downpour. As the freeway flooded and cars around us slowed to a crawl, Nick persisted in driving recklessly.
A few hours into the trip, we made pitstops for dinner and Martha's soft serve. Then we started up windy mountain roads. The sun had set, casting darkness around us and a fog hung in the air. The road narrowed into a two lane highway and we got caught behind cars going at a slower speeds. When the center divide was a checked yellow line, Nick would use the opportunity to pass slow cars. I had felt uneasy on the freeway and now felt fearful on the mountain roads. We again were stuck behind a slower car and with solid double yellow lines in the middle, I thought Nick would heed the law. And yet, suddenly, Nick pulled the car into the empty lane beside us, putting our car in the path of possible oncoming traffic and sped up to pass the car in front of us. I could no longer stay quiet. "Nick," I started, "It makes me really nervous when you cross double yellow lines to pass cars in front of us. We aren't on a deadline to get to the house. What's the rush?" Nick offered no response, but slowed down the speed of the car. He didn't pull that stunt again and half an hour later we safely arrived to our destination.
The next morning, while eating a leisure breakfast with the entire gang, including Heather's mom and sister, I took in the gorgeous mountain views surrounding their home. The weather was warm and breezy, a relief from the city's gross, humid heat. Heather, her mom, sister, and I decided to go to Lake Placid to shop and eat.
In the car, on the way to Lake Placid, we discussed Nick's driving the night before. We all criticized his reckless driving. I felt uneasy thinking that we would have to ride back with him in a few days. The departure plan was to leave the Adirondacks early Wednesday morning, 5a, to arrive back to the city by 10a. We were all committed to work that day. I worried that this deadline would give Nick the excuse to drive like a maniac. I also wondered if I should refuse to be in the car unless someone else stepped up to drive. "Should I volunteer to drive us back?" I asked myself. I tried not to dwell in these thoughts and to enjoy the vacation, but the thoughts nagged in my mind.
The next morning, Sunday, I woke up and headed to the kitchen for breakfast. Heather and her siblings were discussing playing tennis at a local court. "Do you wanna go?" they asked me. "Nah, I'll stay and enjoy the scenery," I replied. I'm not much of a tennis player and knew I would enjoy a leisure morning instead. Everyone, including Nick, took off for the courts, while Heather's mom and I went outdoors with coffee in hand. We sat outside for two hours chatting and taking in the scenery. We were mid-conversation when we heard the gang arrive back. Heather came out on to the deck and said in one long breath, "Nick hurt his ankle. Really badly. He can't put any weight on it."
Nick had indeed hurt his ankle badly. It was swollen the size of a baseball and he was using a metal bat as a cane. He had little experience playing tennis and when a ball had been hit to him, he jumped up in the air, tried to pirouette, and landed with his full weight on his ankle. Given that we were in a small mountain town, he couldn't easily be taken to the hospital. He had to sit and elevate his leg, but there was no much more to be done. We all agreed that he had probably badly sprained his ankle. And it was his driving foot.
It was a bummer that Nick had hurt himself, but I was secretly relieved. His foot was swollen enough that he couldn't put pressure on it for two full days and it was completely out of the question that he would drive. I felt so thankful that the driving issue had been resolved without a confrontation. It honestly felt like divine intervention to me. I do believe that sometimes, life solves our problems for us and Nick hurting his ankle was an example of this.
I fully enjoyed myself the rest of the weekend, knowing that Nick was physically incapable of driving us back to the city. We went on a fabulous boat ride, hosted a dinner party, hiked, and watched fireworks on the 4th. At 10a Wednesday morning, I found myself safe and sound, back at work, after a 4 hour drive with Ben at the wheel and Nick in the passenger seat. I couldn't have been more thankful for the weekend.
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