Readability

Scary Story

by baldilocks

Orig­i­nally posted in 2003. Edited.

Around 1998, I was dri­ving home to LA from my reserve unit on a late Sun­day after­noon. The seventy-​mile trip was nor­mally unevent­ful out­side of the usual crazy Cal­i­for­nia dri­vers. But this one was different.

One of my close friends/​co-​workers also lived in LA at the time and, on this day, we left about the same time. This was unusual in itself, given both of our unpre­dictable work­loads: one or both of us often stayed late.

So we drove close to each other, with me in front. At the time, I had a cell phone, so we yakked on the phone a bit, then we hung up and drove.

[cap­tion id=“attachment_83645” align=“alignright” width=“210”]windowlessvan The van looked just like this.[/caption]

About ten min­utes after we hung up, a van cuts me off. I swore a bit, then slowed down to get off of its rear. The van slows down too. So I change lanes and slow down to avoid what I think is just another of the myr­iad Cal­i­for­nia idiots. The van, light blue with no side or back win­dows, changes lanes to get in front of me again. It slows down.

My friend calls me back: “What is this mf’s problem?

Me: (shaken) I don’t know. Did I cut him off?

Friend: No. I’ve been watch­ing the whole time. (pauses) Pull over. And what­ever you do, stay in the car!

I pull over to the shoul­der and, sure enough, the van pulls over some 100 feet in front of me. My friend pulls over behind me. I’m ner­vous as a cat as I watch the sce­nario unfold.

I see the driver’s side door of the van open. A man with dark hair – maybe Latino, maybe not – starts to get out. Then his eyes widen; he jumps back in and speeds off. The van goes over on two wheels, nearly turn­ing over get­ting out of there. Dust is fly­ing up all over the place. I look in my left mir­ror and see my friend approach­ing my window.

I guess a tall, impos­ing black man wear­ing BDUs (my friend) was a bit more than the van-​driver bar­gained for.

I still won­der to this day what that guy was going to do and who else was in the van. I was obvi­ously mil­i­tary – wear­ing ‘blues,’ – blouse and skirt. Was it an attempted per­vert hit or an attempted mil­i­tary hit? Or was it racial? Or some com­bi­na­tion thereof? I don’t know and I’m very happy not to have found out.

For this rea­son – and many oth­ers – I believe in God’s right hand of protection.

Juli­ette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. (Her older blog is located here.) Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was pub­lished in 2012. Her sec­ond novel will be done in 2016. Fol­low her on Twit­ter.

Please con­tribute to Juliette’s JOB: Her new novel, her blog, her Inter­net to keep the lat­ter going and COF­FEE to keep her going!

Or hit Da Tech Guy’s Tip Jar in the name of Inde­pen­dent Journalism — -»»baldilocks

by baldilocks

Originally posted in 2003. Edited.

Around 1998, I was driving home to LA from my reserve unit on a late Sunday afternoon. The seventy-mile trip was normally uneventful outside of the usual crazy California drivers. But this one was different.

One of my close friends/co-workers also lived in LA at the time and, on this day, we left about the same time. This was unusual in itself, given both of our unpredictable workloads: one or both of us often stayed late.

So we drove close to each other, with me in front. At the time, I had a cell phone, so we yakked on the phone a bit, then we hung up and drove.

windowlessvan
The van looked just like this.

About ten minutes after we hung up, a van cuts me off. I swore a bit, then slowed down to get off of its rear. The van slows down too. So I change lanes and slow down to avoid what I think is just another of the myriad California idiots. The van, light blue with no side or back windows, changes lanes to get in front of me again. It slows down.

My friend calls me back: “What is this mf’s problem?

Me: (shaken) I don’t know. Did I cut him off?

Friend: No. I’ve been watching the whole time. (pauses) Pull over. And whatever you do, stay in the car!

I pull over to the shoulder and, sure enough, the van pulls over some 100 feet in front of me. My friend pulls over behind me. I’m nervous as a cat as I watch the scenario unfold.

I see the driver’s side door of the van open. A man with dark hair–maybe Latino, maybe not–starts to get out. Then his eyes widen; he jumps back in and speeds off. The van goes over on two wheels, nearly turning over getting out of there. Dust is flying up all over the place. I look in my left mirror and see my friend approaching my window.

I guess a tall, imposing black man wearing BDUs (my friend) was a bit more than the van-driver bargained for.

I still wonder to this day what that guy was going to do and who else was in the van. I was obviously military–wearing ‘blues,’–blouse and skirt. Was it an attempted pervert hit or an attempted military hit? Or was it racial? Or some combination thereof? I don’t know and I’m very happy not to have found out.

For this reason–and many others–I believe in God’s right hand of protection.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. (Her older blog is located here.) Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was published in 2012. Her second novel will be done in 2016. Follow her on Twitter.

Please contribute to Juliette’s JOB:  Her new novel, her blog, her Internet to keep the latter going and COFFEE to keep her going!

Or hit Da Tech Guy’s Tip Jar in the name of Independent Journalism—->>>>baldilocks