Bonds beyond the dents

Posted 7/29/21

This hasn't happened to me before . I'm being hit on by women. Annie and Alice, fictitious names so as to absolve them of anything more than not paying greater attention, are lovely people. Both are artists in their own way. One is a dance instructor.

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Bonds beyond the dents


This hasn’t happened to me before … I’m being hit on by women.

Annie and Alice, fictitious names so as to absolve them of anything more than not paying greater attention, are lovely people. Both are artists in their own way. One is a dance instructor. The other directs programs that bring students together for performances and other artistic projects.

Neither woman targeted me or, for that matter, knew I was behind the wheel of the car they were following. Yet, once we had the time to chat – and there was time to do that – we concluded that in one way or another we’re connected in Rhode Island.

Annie and I had made our introductions on Veterans Memorial Parkway in East Providence as the road parallels the bike path, offering an expansive view of Providence. It was after the morning commute. Traffic was light. Conditions were good. I was following a white van, doing about 40 as we approached an intersection on the left near Metacomet Golf Club. A car was stopped at the intersection, apparently waiting for a break to turn left on the parkway. The van slowed. I braked, thinking the driver planned to turn left. It didn’t. Rather, it went beyond the intersection and momentarily stopped directly in the middle of the road. I stopped. That’s when I heard the crash and felt the impact. My rear view mirror gave a close up view of the hood and windshield of what was a black BMW. The van split.

I pulled onto the shoulder. The crumpled BMW followed. I got out. Annie, dressed in business attire, ran toward me.

“I’m so sorry. Are you alright?”

I assured her I was fine. She had out her phone and immediately called police. Explaining she was on her way to a meeting, she started texting and then returned to her car to get her registration and insurance card. I rummaged through the glove compartment to find mine. An East Providence officer was there in no time. He inquired if we were alright and asked for licenses and registrations. We gave accounts of what happened.

Annie held her insurance card with its distinctive PURE teal lettering. There was a bond.

I told her I use the same company.

“Don’t you love them?”

I had to agree. They always follow up when I have questions or look to change my coverage.

Strange how finding common ground over insurance coverage had transformed this chance unwanted encounter into an introduction.

The officer made his report, handing us slips of paper with the report number. He said he would stop traffic when we were ready to pull out. We hadn’t exchanged names or contact information. Annie wrote her name and phone number. I handed her my card.

“I think I know you.” I would have remembered Annie, but I had no recollection of meeting her.

She looked at the business card listing Beacon Communications publications.

“Don’t you work with Barry Fain?”

A longtime friend, Barry is co-publisher of Providence Media. Annie lives of the East Side and is Barry’s neighbor. We soon were exchanging names of mutual friends. I looked back. The officer was waiting for us.

I suggested we better leave. Lights flashing, the officer stopped traffic. We pulled out.

Annie followed up. She sent me an email on Sunday inquiring how I felt. I responded informing her of my latest development.

By then, I had been rear ended a second time.

Sailing friend Claude and I were returning from upstate New York on the Route 37 off ramp to Post Road south. I was behind the wheel of his prized jeep. Traffic was light and there was no backup on the off ramp as there is during commuting hours. I slowed for the merge with Post Road when we felt the jolt, actually more of a tap.

We cleared the intersection and then pulled into the Lincoln Park Cemetery parking lot. None of us were hurt. Damage to both vehicles was minimal, but Claude called police in order to have a report.

A young woman dressed in sweat pants, Alice, was returning from having taught a dance class. As we waited, I learned Alice lives in the “Conimicut area.”

There was that bond again. We had more to talk about than dented fenders, insurance and police reports.

I asked what street and realized she’s only three houses away. I know her mother and asked about her plans to open a store in the village. We talked about our newest neighbor who moved in less than a year ago.

“She’s nice.” I echoed Alice’s observation.

The officer responding listened to our accounts and took our licenses and registrations to complete his report in his cruiser. It wasn’t long.

Claude asked how long he has been a member of the department. He said three years, adding that the Route 37 merge lanes with Post Road is renowned for accidents.

This was yet another connection; one that I would just as soon not repeat.

bonds, dents


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