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I was getting ready for bed this evening, mulling over the day’s events and how horrible everything seemed to have gone, when an invisible billy club whacked me in the ribs and robbed me of my breath. How had I not realised this? Today was the 23rd of January ...

and this morning, driving up the hill from my house, swerving around the downed tree branches and scattered storm debris, I was halted by the scream of sirens charging down the road. First the ambulance passed, then the policeman and then the fire truck. They raced past—but yet, raced at a snail’s pace. As I made the turn, I realised why they had. My car fishtailed, so I eased up on the accelerator to get it back under control. I made it to the first stop sign on my travels, then progressed through, gaining speed to make the hill at the posted 40 mph only to fishtail again, this time at less than 30. Black ice covered the roads from the top of my hill right the way up to school. When I spoke with our secretary later on, I found out that a car had overturned on a sharp bend less than a quarter mile south of my house. They were racing to that car.

And I was driving a Nissan. A Nissan 4x4. Sliding on black ice. On the morning of the 23rd of January.
It was fifteen years ago on this day that my dad, driving his beloved Nissan 4x4 pickup truck, hit black ice and swerved into oncoming traffic. His head ricocheted off of the frame of the driver’s side door, and thirty hours later, I left Seattle on a plane bound for Harrisburg to be by his side and pray for his life.

Fifteen years ago today. And I’m here, in greater Seattle.