Today I was returning to New Orleans from Lake Charles after a court appearance. I was driving east on I-10 in the right lane just outside of Lake Charles, with cruise control set at the speed limit, 70 m.p.h., when a white sedan in the left lane, parallel to my car, veered into my lane. Though the white sedan didn’t touch my car, my reflexes took over. Before I knew it, I went from the right-side shoulder across the left lane into the grassy median, where my car did a 180-degree spin before stopping.
Thankfully, my car (an SUV) did not roll over. I was able to get back onto the highway and continue my return to New Orleans. If my car had crossed the entire median into the westbound lanes, I would be dead. So perhaps from now on, I’m living on borrowed time. Lesson # 1: Life is fragile. In an instant, it can be gone.
One additional lesson: When traveling at highway speeds, control is an illusion. At 70 m.p.h., all it took was a gesture from the car next to me to throw me out of control. So pardon me if, from now on, I set my cruise control below the speed limit.