Areille - the Lioness of God

Friday, July 13, 2007

Not-so-Emergency 9-1-1

I know I know ... it's almost illegal to keep y'all waiting for so long and now start writing on something else. Well what can I say? I am really not in the mood for completing that story ... but I have got another one for you!

Yesterday I was driving on 71 E back to work from my lunch break. I and the car ahead of me were happily cruising at 70mph in nearly zero traffic. And suddenly, he brakes. He is down to nearly 20mph in the middle of the freeway. I jammed the brakes while cussing him like never before and the next thing he does is swerve to the right. There I was with no time to do anything and a bucket in front of me. What was a bucket doing in the middle of the road? Who the %$#& knows. Anyway, in those milliseconds I thought, no biggie, I will drive right over it ... and I did and immediately I understood why he swerved. I was now driving with a loud dragging sound and the smell of burning plastic filling up my car. I immediately switched lanes and parked my car in the non-existent shoulder. There I was, the 1p afternoon sun, cars speeding past me, a bucket under my car and out of my reach. I called 9-1-1. The so-called emergency line. And guess what? They took a whole hour and 10 mins, yes, thats right 1h10m to get to me!!! I slept the entire hour in my air-conditioned car ... but it did get me thinking:

- what if I was getting robbed or raped or killed!! One hour??? I means thats ridiculous.
- Not one person stopped to help me out ... even though I, a girl, stood outside my car for a few mins waving for help. KalyuG!
- What would I do had it not been the age of cell phones and air-conditioners?? I can't even think of any alternative options.
- Why are people throwing buckets on the road??? Curses on them!

Definitely want to thank God for things like the luxury of cell phones and air-conditioners and more importantly having friends to call/sms. Also, would like to warn others to not rely on the 'emergency' system or even 'people'!!!

18 Comments:

  • At 7/14/2007 5:47 AM, Blogger Improper Bostonian said…

    strange it took emergency services an hour to reach you...normally they are late unless it is a major accident...u shud have called AAA instead of 911?

     
  • At 7/14/2007 5:49 AM, Blogger Improper Bostonian said…

    it is stranger that u have to travel some distance for lunch in Austin...don't u have a bustling downtown or an assorted collection of eateries near where u work?

     
  • At 7/14/2007 7:55 AM, Blogger Improper Bostonian said…

    is crime that common in Austin that ppl get robbed/raped/killed in the middle of a weekday...i suppose it is common in crime infested parts of the city, but I guess you wouldn't driving through those areas...

     
  • At 7/15/2007 4:31 AM, Blogger Sharat said…

    I am glad you are ok and came out of this experience unscathed. Things could have gone horribly wrong. I remember driving through peak traffic in Houston and coming across a steel ladder on the middle lane of the freeway. Luckily I swerved and escaped, but at those speeds even a small hanger can mess up your transmission, control or God Forbid, you itself. Just thank your lucky stars you are ok. And yeah, a mid-finger gesture from my end too to the emergency services. Drive safe and always keep your cell phone handy and 'charged'. Keep running Areille.

     
  • At 7/15/2007 6:57 PM, Blogger Ciara said…

    Areille!! OMG...You should have called me!! Not sure how I could have helped...It would have taken me longer than it took the emergency folks to come all the wayfrom RR...but I could have lend you my ears for all your venting!!...Take care girl...and drive safe!!

     
  • At 7/16/2007 11:12 AM, Blogger Zywie said…

    I have personally never called the emergency services, but do you think they came late, because it was'nt a life threatening situation?

     
  • At 7/16/2007 12:59 PM, Blogger Improper Bostonian said…

    Arielle:

    Came across this article in Boston Globe this morning thru' a friend of mine, as she and I got involved in a heated argument with a pseudo-cop few days back...

    anyways, thought of your post when I read this article...check this out...

    Looks like one can't trust even men in uniform these days in MA...hope its not the case in Austin

    http://www.boston.com/news/local/articles/2007/07/13/police_impersonators_preying_with_ease/?p1=email_to_a_friend

     
  • At 7/17/2007 5:22 PM, Blogger Ketaki Karpe said…

    Hey Gayathri, first of all, thank God you are safe.
    At the risk of sounding insensitive, here's my analysis of why the "emergency" services may have taken that long to get to the scene..
    Upon hearing that there was a plastic bucket under your car in the middle of the day, when it's not as dangerous for a person (man or woman) to be on the road alone, 911 categorized your emergency, a certain type. There may have been actual gunpoint robberies, rapes and murders to give priority to, don't you think?
    Also, when I see a car swerve like that for no rhyme or reason, I usually do exactly the same thing, because that happens a lot on the freeway (torn tires on the road, debris, roadkill, potholes - this was a Bombay thing, etc).
    A lot of junk falls out of pick up trucks when people transport things..
    I'm sure you don't give a damn about all these things now. I would think the exact same things you wrote about. It's easy to be outside the picture and rant.

     
  • At 7/17/2007 8:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    can i ummm be your fraandship? i like to be goood freend. Even remove burning plastic bucket from under car :D

     
  • At 7/18/2007 7:44 AM, Blogger Areille said…

    ketaki/zywie: on the same page as you now. After being there and venting out immediately, I realised that mine must not have been some major event that they had to hurry and get there. I guess the even more frustrating thing was I called 9-1-1 twice, again after 40 mins and the new operator asked me details of the whole thing again. I would think using my phone number or name should gain access to my earlier request. Very weird.

    IMproper B: I sometimes like to go home for lunch and the newly arrived Scrubs DVD at home was very tempting. :) There are a lot of eateries in downtown.. but there is usually traffic there and I don't go there from work too much. And I am a vegan which restircts my choices even more. So more than normal, I guess, eating at home is my best option!

    No Crime isn't that common ... I don't think so ... and since it isn't these people shouldn't have been busy elsewhere, right?

    Hopefully there isn't a next time, but will keep AAA in mind.

     
  • At 7/18/2007 7:47 AM, Blogger Areille said…

    ciara, sharat, anony: aww thanks you guys!! you da best!

     
  • At 7/19/2007 3:53 PM, Blogger Improper Bostonian said…

    scrubs and lunch...its indeed a great luxury to go home for lunch and watch some good shows on TV...Can you go home, watch TV, eat lunch and return to your desk in 1hour?...wow, that is impressive

    I heard Austin has much better place for vegans...thats one of the reasons I was planning to relocate there...

     
  • At 7/19/2007 3:55 PM, Blogger Improper Bostonian said…

    btw, I have never come across any sane guy giving a lift to anyone, either male/female, on the road in North-east...infact you are not even supposed to ask, as in many cases guys have ended up dead after trying to help damsel in distress...i am quite amazed you even tried that stunt...

    ofcourse, I or any desi guy would have helped a desi girl, as it is highly unlikely bandit queens from Chambal are in US working in MNCs...:-)

     
  • At 7/19/2007 4:05 PM, Blogger Improper Bostonian said…

    yes AAAs are better than 911 for emergencies on road...these things always happen, if its not with buckets on road, it will be something else...

    Actualy I was thinking of a much better solution than AAA or 911...If yu have a camera cell phone, you should a record a few of your shouts with "MUJHE BACHAO", coupled with some whimpering/weeping/wailing, allied with few tears, and send it to your friends as mms clip, asking them to upload on You Tube, with a caption like "A Desi Ladki in Distress !!!"...see how much response it gets...i am sure AAA or 911 would reach faster than what they would otherwise...think of the coverage in International media...you will soon have a cult following...

    or you could do all this by urself with an iPhone...:-) its a wonderful ad for Apple, and you will become a celebrity too...

    i have lotsa such ideas...unfortunately i can't try everything in my lifetime...i can pass some to you that will be helpful for girls...lemme know...:-)

     
  • At 7/24/2007 5:07 PM, Blogger Improper Bostonian said…

    @ Arielle:
    Its been a month since you wrote a post on ur trip to Kerala...Suspense has been building for quite some time now, to know what happened from where you finished last post...:-)

    Hope you get into the mood to finish the sequel as soon as you can...

     
  • At 7/26/2007 9:14 PM, Blogger Ashoka said…

    Good that atleast you are exposed to the real world. I am not trying to be rude here but atleast one should know how to face these kind of situation in life. I know everybody wants to show their care here and I am talking some bullshit but think in other way am I wrong??

     
  • At 7/27/2007 9:13 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    SWAMI ASHOKANANDA....:)

    I can't help but be amazed at all your enlightening philosophical comments throughout Areille's blogs....

     
  • At 8/04/2007 2:10 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    make the blogs smaller too borin

     

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