Friday, September 19, 2008

mami, you need to call me right back, someone just hit our car!

Unfortunately, I didn't listen to that voice mail message until I was at home with rugrat this evening, although the message came in at 11:30 this morning.

I, of course, was in meetings back-to-back from 10 til 3. Afterward, I stopped by Macy's (the flagship store) to pay my bill and try to find a couple of jackets for work. I hadn't thought to check my phone before leaving work -- hey, no one ever calls me -- and was therefore quite surprised to receive her call at 3:30. I would have thought she'd be getting ready for work.

With tears in her voice, she told me that she'd been driving down Warburton (an arterial) to Yonkers to get her nails done (there's a really cheap nail salon there) when a car turned off a side road right into her, side-swiping her car and pushing it to the side of the road.

If there'd been cars parked on the side of the road like there usually are, she'd have been a pancake. And if she hadn't seen the other car coming out of the corner of her eye and hit the brakes, all the damage would have been right at the driver side door where she was, instead of mainly at the front end. Which means she might have been more seriously hurt than she was.

People came running out of stores and buildings asking her if she was ok, but no one even questioned if the older man driving, or his son, were alright. So she had lots of witnesses that it was totally his fault, but she didn't need them. Although the older man said only two things -- 'what happened,' and 'I didn't see anything coming' -- his son was completely apologetic. He took control, gave rugrat all his personal and insurance info, and said to call him if she had any questions. He took full responsibility on behalf of his dad.

People asked if she needed to go to the hospital, or if she needed a tow truck, but she was in pain, in shock, and just wanted to go home. (She also wanted her mami, but of course I was nowhere to be found. Typical working mami, never there when you need her. Makes for some serious mami guilt, you know?) She drove the car home (despite the fact that it's pretty much undrivable) and took a nap, hoping the pain in her neck, back and shoulder would go away, but by the time she called me, she was still really hurting.

I ordered her to call a taxi and go to the local hospital (just two or three miles away, thankfully), and I jumped back on the subway/train home and took a taxi myself to meet her at the emergency room (thank goodness this happened before she went off my insurance rather than after). I arrived just after she'd been given a flexeril injection, and she was looking pretty darned pale (no small feat, being mexican and fairly brown). She is sore and on a muscle relaxant but should be just fine.

The car is undrivable, with most of the damage at the front driver's side. It'll need a tow to even get it to a repair shop, as the whole bumper and area around the tire is so mashed that it rubs against the tire. Thank goodness the guy who hit her has insurance, since we dropped our collision on the ten year old car last fall. It'll be a little difficult for her to be without the car while it's being repaired, because the bus doesn't run late enough to get her home from work at night. If the guy's insurance covers a rental, she may not be able to drive it, as NY has an age limit for rental car drivers. I'll have to check into it.

So tonight, for the first time in a long time, I'm at home on a friday night with company -- rugrat and her boyfriend. Of course, he's in the bedroom sleeping off cold meds, and she's on the sofa spaced out on muscle relaxers. But hey...we're all together now.

Todos juntos ahora...

All Together Now, the Beatles:

Updated Saturday at 10:30 am to add: I just called their insurance company and my own. Their company takes 48 hours for an adjuster to call me back. I have to wait for 48 hours, with no car, and that's not counting repair time. Rugrat can't get home from work without that car, which basically means she'll have to move into her boyfriend's place for a few days because he's on a bus route that will get her to/from work.

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