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#1 Dec 05, 2017 1:44 pm

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I'm too young to die!

One Friday night I was driving home from Kingston to Mandeville. It had been a long day/week, and as usual I was tired. I could have stayed in Kingston, but that only meant I’d have to schlep home to Mandeville the following morning, so I headed off for Mandeville at about two o’clock in the morning.

It was a cool night, and what I didn’t notice was that the dew on the road got progressively thicker, the further up I climbed the mountain to Mandeville. As I rounded a bend, I skidded on a patch of dew and the left rear wheel clipped the embankment. Much to my surprise the car flipped over onto its top and went sliding down the road upside down, then slammed into a retaining wall. The roof collapsed upon impact, trapping me in a crumpled heap with a searing pain in my left shoulder, and I knew immediately my collarbone was broken. For a second I lay there, dazed, confused, trapped, hurt, upside down. And then …

Whoomp! The car caught fire.

The gasoline in the carburetor ignited and flames shot up through the dashboard. [f word]! I remember that first moment of sheer panic, the terror of visualizing what was about to happen, the grist of a million movies. It wouldn’t be long before the fire in the engine reached the gas tank, and when that happened, goodbye Brian. They’d find my crispy remains in the burnt-out wreck. A bad end.

I remember thinking: I'm too young to die - I've still got stuff to do! Then, my brain kicked in: don’t panic, think! I was pinned upside down in my seat with searing pain in my shoulder. I couldn’t get out through the windscreen because of the crushed roof, nor my side window because the car was up against the wall. Then I got it: raise the catch on the side of my seat, push the seat back, and crawl out of the shattered back window.

Great in theory; practice was a different matter. With gravity pushing me upside-down onto my shattered shoulder the pain was excruciating, but fear is a great motivator. With the smell of burning petrol in my nostrils, I wriggled through the tangled wreckage of the car and crawled through the broken back window, across the road and into the ditch on the other side, waiting for the big bang.

Which never came. The fire in the engine spluttered and went out, leaving me cowering in the gully across the road. So much for the movies! I crawled out of the ditch onto the road, to wait for the next car that came along. Which also never came, or for a long while at least, during which time the shock wore off as the pain wore on. Finally a Land Rover hove into view. Thank you sweet Jesus! Do you have any idea how BUMPY Land Rovers are?!

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#2 Dec 05, 2017 7:18 pm

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Re: I'm too young to die!

What a boring almost uneventful life I have lived.  Bike crashes yeah, car crashes, yeah, lorry crashes, yeah, Bus crashes even. Falling down flights of stairs, having bricks land on the back of my skull, nearly slipping into a pothole, but it all seems so mundane up against the experiences of our literary oracle.

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#3 Dec 06, 2017 6:45 am

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Re: I'm too young to die!

Expat wrote:

What a boring almost uneventful life I have lived.  Bike crashes yeah, car crashes, yeah, lorry crashes, yeah, Bus crashes even. Falling down flights of stairs, having bricks land on the back of my skull, nearly slipping into a pothole, but it all seems so mundane up against the experiences of our literary oracle.


Now now...

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#4 Dec 06, 2017 8:28 am

Slice
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Re: I'm too young to die!

Now ah know what ah boring life I had.  My life was mainly party, booze and woman. It was very safe, except when ah use to date that stripper and everyday at 12 noon, ah had to crawl through the drugs invested neighbor hoods to have sex with her.

Man you had fun and also lived very dangerously.

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#5 Dec 06, 2017 8:50 am

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Re: I'm too young to die!

"ah had to crawl through the drugs invested neighbor hoods to have sex with her."

Seems like you liked a bit of danger too lol!!

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#6 Dec 06, 2017 12:21 pm

Slice
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Re: I'm too young to die!

That woman did not play. Did I tell you, the first time we went to a motel, as she started to get undressed, under her blouse was a Gun holster and ah gun.  I almost freaked out, but she quickly calm me down.

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#7 Dec 06, 2017 6:13 pm

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Re: I'm too young to die!

"Calmed you down"???? LOL not the opposite??

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#8 Dec 06, 2017 6:45 pm

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Re: I'm too young to die!

New Historian wrote:
Expat wrote:

What a boring almost uneventful life I have lived.  Bike crashes yeah, car crashes, yeah, lorry crashes, yeah, Bus crashes even. Falling down flights of stairs, having bricks land on the back of my skull, nearly slipping into a pothole, but it all seems so mundane up against the experiences of our literary oracle.


Now now...

As you have already told the story I shall cut to the main event.

While riding my Lambretta I went to pull into a car park which had a puddle in the entrance... In the puddle was some kind of hidden rock/brick... something. Lambrettas did not have big wheels. ergo hit lump, and scooter goes over... with me laying on my sider with water almost up to my navel with my leg trapped under the hot exhaust.... Almost like being trapped in a blazing car... smile Despite super human strength I was unable to lift it off me with the leg getting warmer and warmer. Luckily a driver came over and pulled it off me.  Not in JA, rather more boringly in Surrey, but cut out the blazing car and slip in the Lambretta, and we have shared a life experience... LoL.

Last edited by Expat (Dec 06, 2017 6:46 pm)

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#9 Dec 06, 2017 7:00 pm

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Re: I'm too young to die!

yEAH BOY THEM SMALL-WHEEL scooters are a bloody menace. And Lambretta parts HEXPENSIVE, especially all those bloody chrome foglamps!

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#10 Dec 06, 2017 7:25 pm

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Re: I'm too young to die!

I never did the fog lamp thing, although I have to admit to a megaphone exhaust with the baffle removed.  Actually not THAT loud, but it did have a warmer sound.

Latterly I had a race tuned scooter which sadly needed a racing exhaust I didn't have the money to buy, so it went like a rocket to around 60, and then went wahhh wahhh as the gasses couldn't clear quick enough. Now THAT was loud. I used to get home in the early hours as kids do, and even then I was sensible enough to back off the throttle a long way from home, and cruise the last 1/2 mile, and kill the engine and roll the last road to home.

My exhausts were never rusty underneath, as I kept dragging them on the road.   smile

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