Way back on the third of July, someone driving too fast sideswiped our parked car and smashed our sideview mirror into a dozen pieces. The driver, later determined to be a “he,” also scuffed up the driver’s side doors. He continued, unabated, down the road and turned the corner a block later.
His decision to keep on going was a bad idea.
Primarily because, being who we are, Jennifer and I have a general practice of hunting down people who wronged us and demanding that justice be served. You can ask the managers of several restaurants, hotels, stores, hospitals, and online retailers who have awarded us thousands of dollars over the years due to their negligence.
So there we were, minding our own business in our yard, when SMASH!, the four of us hear a loud noise. Jennifer quickly deduced that the driver had hit our car. I was under the mistaken impression the driver had merely thrown something at our car but, either way, bad move, buddy.
In his defense, he might have assumed the owner of the vehicle wasn’t anywhere near the car. Most of the cars parked on our road are for people who are patronizing nearby restaurants. And even the people who, like us, do live in the neighborhood, probably aren’t standing outside, within twenty feet of their vehicles.
Another possibility is that he was “under the influence,” and figured that the slight chance of getting caught for a minor hit-and-run accident was a safer bet than pulling over, giving me his insurance policy…and having me insist the police come over…who would then check his blood-alcohol level…which would turn out to be…not exactly legal. So drive on he did.
I ran out into the street waving my arms trying to get the driver to stop. When I saw he wasn’t going to, I repeatedly spoke his license plate number while my wife entered the number in her phone. We called the cops, received an accident report, took pictures of the injuries to our vehicle and then, a few days later, received the name, address and phone number of the offender.
So I called him. A woman answered the phone. She was his wife. She knew nothing of her husband’s hit-and-run and felt really bad about what he had done. She even gave me his work number, telling me to call him at work. I was hesitant to do this. “Is it okay if I bother him at work?” I asked. She said, “Oh, I don’t care, he needs to deal with his problems.” So…yeah…this was starting to sound like a bad idea. The last thing I wanted to do was bother someone with a history of “problems” at work, where I might embarass him in front of his coworkers or boss. So I pressed her a little more to just give me her insurance policy number. She put the phone down to go look for it. When she came back to the phone, I could tell she was very upset. In fact, she even started crying and apologizing.
This was really weird.
I explained to her that I held no ill-will to her husband, and certainly not to her. I just needed to get my car repaired, and, as far as I can tell, they should be the people who foot the bill for the repairs.
So then I called her insurance company and explained the problem.
And now I’m happy to announce that our car is
good as new back to the way it was before the accident. No cost to us. Not even for the rental car we had for the week while our car was at an auto body shop.