Tuesday, May 13, 2003

On Friday night, as I was driving on my scooter to Menche’s house, I was hit by a station wagon. At the intersection of 33rd and NE Sandy, I was going straight, the car that hit me was facing me, going the opposite direction, and she made a left turn directly into me. The car hit right under where I sit. A few inches forward and I would probably still be in the hospital. My scooter fell on its right side, my left leg caught under it, and we slid a few feet. As I was trying to push the heaviest part of my scooter off my leg to free myself, a woman came running up and lifted my bike off of me. A man arrived immediately after and they both helped me to the side of the road. I thought the woman helping me was the person who hit me, but she wasn’t – she had however seen the entire accident. The man called 911 and the woman helped me get comfortable. My ankle was badly burned by the asphalt, and there was a possibility it was broken. MY left hand was tingling, and my arm felt pretty weird from my elbow to my fingertips. I think that I caught much of my weight on my left arm when I hit the ground. As we were waiting for the police and ambulance, the woman who hit me started to drive off! She came back though and parked on the side of the road. She didn’t come over until well after the police arrived, and immediately went up to the officer and said it wasn’t her fault. He told her that he didn’t care to hear who’s fault it was, he was here to get insurance information. As I sat on the concrete sidewalk, my scooter leaning against a telephone pole, I thought about riding again and felt none of the pleasure it used to bring me, I felt only fear. I loved riding my scooter, but I don’t think I will again. I called Timothy and told him I had been hit. I asked him to call Menche and have him take me to the hospital. I did not want to have to pay for an ambulance ride in case I end up being the one to pay for the medical bills. I have never previously been in an accident and was not positive who would be paying for the medical. Ambulances are expensive, and I do not have health insurance. The medics stuffed a cardboard splint with paper, then taped it to my leg. They carried me to Menches truck, which my scooter had already been loaded into. I looked into the back at my scooter and realized it is probably totaled.
I really do not know how the lady didn’t see me. I am paranoid about being hit, so wear an orange vest with yellow reflective strips. I was facing her, with my headlight shining in her direction. The scooter has plenty of reflectors, and I also put extra reflective tape along the sides of the floor. She still somehow didn’t see me and turned right into me! IF she had been watching in the direction she was driving the car, she should have seen me RIGHT IN FRONT OF HER! If she wasn’t watching where she was driving the car, she shouldn’t be behind the wheel.
Menche took me to OHSU because it is close to my apartment and I figured I would probably need a cab to get home. They took me in and put me on a bed in a room. I waited, and waited, and waited. A doctor came in and asked what happened, I told him. He asked if I wanted any pain pills. I said no thanks. He left without cleaning or putting ointment on my wound. I waited some more. Another doctor came in, poked and prodded me, said it didn’t look broken but we would get x-rays just to be sure. I waited some more, gradually was taken to the x-ray room, then taken back to my room after the x-rays were taken. There I waited some more. Then waited a little bit longer. Eventually the doctor came in and said he checked the x-rays and it looked okay, but we needed to wait for the official word from the radiologist. He left and I waited some more. Eventually some nurses came in, and a student nurse cleaned and dressed my wound. Then they checked me out. My ankle was pretty painful to walk on, so they gave me some crutches. I didn’t get out of the hospital until around midnight. To get home, I had to call a cab. On the way home, I was telling the cabbie about the vest that I wear while riding and he asked if I ride with a partner. I said yes as Tim and I are often riding together, and he said he sees us all the time riding around on our scooters and has often thought that we are smart for wearing those bright reflective vests.
The next morning, the husband of the lady who hit me called. He said he wanted to make sure I was okay, and he has kids my age so was pretty worried when his wife told him there’d been an accident and a 22 year old woman was hurt. I wasn’t really sure what to say, but talked to him for a little while. He wants to take Tim and I out for coffee or dinner or something. That would be pretty uncomfortable I think.
Around about noon on Saturday, my muscles started to get sore. They got worse and worse, and by the end of the day, every muscle in my body ached. It even hurt to cough and sneeze. I felt like my whole body had just been pummeled. The pain increased until I went to bed that night.
The next morning when I woke, I was so stiff and sore I could barely move. The hot shower felt great, and helped loosen me up quite a bit. We went to Menche’s house for another day of yard sale-ing. Guess who showed up? Yeup, the lady who hit me. She didn’t recognize me, and I didn’t say anything. What could I possibly say? “Thanks for running over me Friday night?” I was pretty sore all day, though towards the end of the night my legs and arms were starting to feel better.
On Mondays, usually I go riding with my mom. I was unable to go riding on Monday because my ankle is too stiff and weak. I didn’t think it was a good idea to be putting that much pressure on my ankle so soon after what happened anyhow, not to mention the fact that walking is still rather painful. Besides my ankle, my back and sides are still so sore that I wouldn’t want to be over exerting myself on horseback. It takes a lot of muscles to really ride, rather than just be a passive passenger sitting on a horse. I spent the day taking care of this accident business. I had to go file a report at the DMV, as well as get in touch with a lawyer and my insurance agent. I also gave a statement to my insurance company. I found out that the woman who hit me filed a claim against my insurance company, saying that my lights weren’t on and that I was in dark clothes. I guess she forgot there were a couple witnesses as well as some police officers that arrived on the scene. Not to mention the fact that the lights on Yamaha Vinos cannot be turned off (they turn on and off with the engine). Of course, I also was wearing my bright orange vest with yellow reflective tape, which I absolutely never ride without. The witnesses and police officer even commented on the vest! I cant believe the nerve of this woman. First she runs over me, then she tries to pin the blame on me. Next thing you know she’ll be asking to come over and pour salt on my slowly healing asphalt burn.
Well, I am finishing this up on Tuesday, after starting it on Monday. I am still sore today, and my back, neck, and shoulders in particular. Timothy gave me a massage around noon because my neck and shoulder are extremely knotted. My neck feels constantly like it needs to pop, and sometimes when I turn my head to the left, it cracks loudly. The left side of my neck muscles seem really stiff, in addition to the tightness on the right side of my neck and shoulder. Every muscle in my back, upper back in particular, and my sides, are still aching. It really does suck. I was feeling so good before the accident. I had been doing a lot of jogging with my boyfriend (in fact was looking forward to jogging on Friday night, but of course that never happened), my back and shoulders were feeling good, and my endurance was also really kicking into gear – the last time I jogged, I did about a mile and a half!