Earlier this summer, I was coming home from a camping trip, when I witnessed a rather bizarre accident. I was driving on the highway, when I noticed a U-Haul truck ahead of me moving to the right shoulder of the road. Only when he reached the shoulder, he didn’t stop or slow down…he just kept on going, right over the shoulder and into the grassy ditch beyond. To my horror, I watched as the U-Haul hit a rock or something and then went flying into the air, spinning several times in the process. The side of the truck ripped open, spraying the surrounding area with boxes and furniture. And out of one of the boxes popped a giant Raggedy Ann doll, which at first glance looked like a child.
All the cars on the highway began to slow down and I was afraid I’d just witnessed a possible death. But as I moved closer to the U-Haul, I noticed that it wasn’t the kind you drive, but rather the kind you hitch to the back of some other vehicle. Thank God! At least that meant no one was inside. Further down the road, I could see a large mobile home had pulled over, and there was a man walking back toward the mess. Apparently the U-Haul had come unhitched somehow, and had thankfully veered to the side of the road rather than into oncoming traffic.
What a strange thing to witness. Helplessly watching as someone’s truck full of possessions are spewed out on the side of the road, as if they were setting up for an all-day yard sale. I was still shaking from the incident several hours later, because it was the first time I’d witnessed something that surreal since 9/11. It was like something out of a movie. Like a giant twister had picked up this truck and spun it around in the air not fifty feet away from me.
I was just glad no one got hurt, though I felt sorry for the family that would now have to literally pick up the pieces of their lives from the side of the road. In some ways, that’s how I feel about our country these days. Like we’re a U-Haul out of control. We keep spinning and spinning, and pieces are falling out all over the place, but it doesn’t seem like there’s an end in sight. When will the U-Haul known as America finally come to rest at the side of the road, so we can begin picking up the pieces and starting anew?