Accident by Patty LaRoche

Should 2020 be your year to do a little bathroom remodeling, here’s a tip: You don’t need a vanity. All you need is a metal T.V. tray.

Just take a gander at the picture I took at the motel where Dave and I stayed on our Christmas trip to spend time with his daughter and her family in Henderson, Nevada. Impressive, right?

At least the motel’s reviews were. (I’m thinking they were made by Bedouin sheepherders who dwell in caves and cliffs, but I’m not sure.) Anyway, when I looked for the room’s coffee pot, Dave, who had checked us in, told me that coffee was available only in the morning in the lobby at 7:00 … the same lobby, as he described it, that doubled as the workout room since it boasted a machine with a belt gizmo that jiggled waist-fat while you waited. Sweet Jesus! What kind of motel had we chosen?

I mean, at home I program my coffee pot the night before so there is no lag time between when I wake up at 5:00 and bolt to the kitchen. My brain is programmed to demand Java before I can function. Two hours without coffee might do me in.

Then, as usual, God got my attention. Hadn’t I just last week written an article about not grumbling? And hadn’t I, while driving just a few hours before, had a visual of what really mattered? The story unfolded earlier when I slowed down for an accident in the highway medium where a man appeared to be doing CPR on a victim whose body hung outside a smoking sports car. Pulling onto the shoulder, Dave and I ran to help, asking if someone had called

9-1-1. They had. By then, two other men joined us and, fearing the car would explode, wielded fire extinguishers aimed at the crushed engine. Time was critical.

As it turned out, the Good Samaritan was not doing CPR. His pumping motion was from a crowbar he used to disengage the woman’s leg from the twisted metal. Immediately, I knelt beside the woman’s head, held her hand and began praying. The engine smoke was overpowering, and the victim’s moans were gut-wrenching. I asked her name. “Angela,” she groaned and then begged for help. As a crowd gathered, I called on Jesus, asking for wisdom for the helpers and comfort for Angela.

With each crank of the crowbar, the victim pleaded for help. Through tears I tried to encourage her, saying that the paramedics were coming, but when her leg finally was freed, I couldn’t believe the damage. Her foot went one direction, her ankle another, and her leg still another. When someone said we needed to move her away from the smoking vehicle, I objected. We had no idea what internal injuries Angela had endured. Instead, I prayed that the fire extinguishers would be sufficient.

If the doctors were able to save her leg, no doubt Angela will struggle. A T.V. tray/vanity substitution or a cup of early morning coffee probably will not be on her list of concerns. Instead, she will long for the day when she can walk to the sink unassisted or to the kitchen to make her morning brew.

Somehow when I awoke that next morning, coffee didn’t matter. As it turned out, praying for Angela was the perfect substitute.

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