I was driving one day with a friend. We were going our usual drive around the city, to nowhere in specific. This is something I do frequently, either with friends or by myself. I just enjoy the freedom of driving, the feeling that at any moment, if I decided, I could just take a different exit, and get the hell out of here, get away from it all, if I wanted to.
Anyway, we were at a familiar intersection, driving towards a familiar coast-side road which is a ‘go-to’ destination whenever I’m on these little excursions. From it, you can see the entirety of the coast, as well as the lit-up bridge connecting the mainland of Greece with Peloponesse. Of course, the bridge isn’t always lit up, you have to be lucky enough to come across it when it does. The lights are turned off most days of the week for economy reasons, what with Greece being poor and all. Of course, this itself has become a bit like a game, and you feel a bit victorious when you’re able to find it lit up.
As I was driving through the intersection, I saw a car coming right towards us, from the other, intersecting road. He didn’t seem to be breaking, so my first reaction was to turn to my friend and say ‘What the hell is this guy doing? Crossing a red light like that.’ But then it hit me. Then I realized… That road had 2 stop lights. One for the lane turning towards the right, and one for the cars going straight. I had seen the green light for the cars going right, and had mistakenly thought that was the case for me, that I had a green light, when in reality, I had a red, I crossed a red light. I crossed a red light. I crossed a red light.
We had just gotten out of the intersection, and immediately, I stopped the car on the side of the road. My hands were shaking, I felt weak, sick. My friend, on the contrary, was much more at ease. ‘Come on!’ she said. ‘These things happen. We’re fine, aren’t we? Nothing happened, did it? It’s not that big of a deal. Come on, let’s continue our lives.’
Let’s continue our lives.
So we did, we continued our lives. I started the car again, and continued our journey. We even stopped at a coffee shop, had some hot chocolate, discussed all sorts of other things, and then parted, without much reference to it. But my brain was stuck in that moment. All I could think of is, what had I done? My mistake could have cost us our lives. And the worst part is: I didn’t even consider it a mistake. I mean, of course you make a mistake by being negligent, by not noticing the red light, by being distracted, or confused, or whatever, in that moment. But was that moment of distraction really worth having my life taken away from me? Is that the punishment that should correspond to such a mistake? It just didn’t click right in my head. I just couldn’t absorb it. I thought about what anyone would think of in a moment like this: the second law of physics. How every action should have an equal, but opposite reaction. I thought how this didn’t fit into that law. It was against the laws of physics. And if the laws of physics don’t apply, you know what happens. The balance of the universe goes off. Way out of place. Suddenly, the balance of the universe depended on this moment. And it was at risk, at great risk.
In the midst of my worries about the balance of the universe, on my drive home, I noticed a song playing on the radio. It was Fragile, by Sting. The lyric ‘on and on the rain will say how fragile we are’ echoed inside me. I walked up the stairs to my home and I was determined that that moment couldn’t be just another moment I would let pass in my life and ‘try to forget’, because ‘it wasn’t important’. I was determined that something had to change after it. I had to bring balance back to the universe again. I had to fix the laws of physics. I had to make the necessary reaction to my action. So, almost mechanically, and without much thought, I searched for a blogging site, found WordPress, and began my blog, naming it, of course, ‘The Rain’. The actions literally just flowed out of me, as if something had overcome me. I had never even imagined writing a blog before. All I did before this was write in my little diary, every once in a while.
Since them, I’ve been writing almost consistently (I said almost!) for two years. I’ve met tons of influential people, I’ve fell in love with so many posts, learned so many new things, and quite frankly, have improved as a person. And the irony is, I’m not even that big of a Sting fan, but I guess that’s part of the message as well, sometimes, some of the things that make the greatest impact on you are things that you never even expected would.
The balance of the universe is back.