In this text, you will learn vocabulary related to cars and driving in the context of a short story. Once you have read it, I encourage you to write your own car incident story and send it to me by email. I will correct and give feedback to the first ten stories that I receive.
A puzzling car incident
It is a chilly Saturday morning in early Autumn. The sun has not shown its face just yet. She invites her dog to jump into the boot of her recently bought car and sits in the driver’s seat. Without delay, she starts the engine and deeply concentrated manouvres out of the underground garage to emerge into a sleepy city.
Driving across empty streets to pick up her friend gives her immense pleasure as it always used to be the other way around before she owned a vehicle and now she is in a position to return the favours.
After a bit of confusion regarding the exact meeting point near the park, she spots her friend waving her hand enthusiastically so she pulls in and gets out of the car to greet her and take the doggie to the grass.
Soon after, they set off towards the mountains in the south of the province where they are meeting another friend. Everything seems to be perfect! On the outskirts of the city, she catches a brief glimpse of a misty sun rising shyly behind the riverside trees.
Driving in the countryside
The windscreen is fogging up and she turns on the heater, They drive along windy roads, up and down a mountain pass, through fog banks and at points, blinded by the emerging sun. All of this representing quite a challenge for an inexperienced driver like her. She couldn’t have done it without her friend’s calming presence and helpful advice. They both place all their attention on the road. Quiet chat, no music, fog lights on and off, adjusting the speed to the tricky circumstances when the visibility is limited… The sun visor panel is not of great help. Sunglasses don’t do the trick either. In spite of this, some cars are speeding past them.
The countryside appears stunning at the break of day. Passing images that she can’t fully appreciate while behind the wheel and trying to stay in full control of the car.
A nasty surprise
When they finally get to the car park at the foot of the mountains, her back muscles are aching a little due to the tension. Walking across autumnal forests and up to the rocky summit seems like the best medicine.
However, they are in for a big nasty shock. Stop the engine, turn off the lights, seat belt off … deep breath! Ear to ear smile. Her friend gets out : “What happened to you car?” The tone of alarm in her voice leaves the question hanging in the air while she can process that this is not going to be such a good day after all. A sense of dread envelops her as she slowly steps out of the car and makes her way towards the right side of the bumper, by which her friend is standing. Not a pretty sight. The bumper is hanging off, dented and covered in some dark stains, as if something oily had hit it. The right headlight is sticking out.
They can’t wrap their head aroud why something like this can have happened on the road without them noticing anything at all. Neither the sound, nor the impact. The car was in tip-top shape when they had met an hour ago. Puzzling!
A third friend arrives at the meeting point. More speculation about how this might have come to happen. Time to call the insurance. The mountains will have to wait,
An hour later the tow truck makes its apperance. The driver is quite a character and adds a touch of humour with his jokes. Driving up the tow truck ramp proves tricky; a good clutch control test. The car stalls a couple of times before she manages to manouvre it to the exact right spot where it can be tied down. Farewell to them!
It’s time to let go of this sinking feeling. Thinking about the hefty sum this is going to cost will not lower the price.
Whatever will be, will be!
The insurance company will send a taxi on demand in the afternoon. After all, their day of hiking still holds up and she is determined to make the most of it.