Charlotte and I send e-mails to each other throughout our work days. We’re always up to date with each other and provide each other with pleasant diversions from our jobs, of which neither of us are particularly fond. Chat chat chat, that’s all we do all day in between meetings and client orientations. Thursday was a day like any other for Charlotte and me, sending innocuous notes back and forth like bored school girls. Midway through the day the phone rang and caller ID identified Charlotte’s work number. Why would she be calling me when we’ve been writing back and forth? It had to be one of those calls.
There’s nothing worse than getting one of those phone calls. You know, the ones that come in the middle of the night or from someone you don’t normally hear from. The calls that get your adrenaline pumping and your nerve up to hear the worst news you could possibly imagine.
Charlotte’s husband, Pinky, had been in an accident. Or as I heard it, “an explosion.” She was going to rush to the county hospital, and I told her I’d meet her there. We had no idea what to expect, what kind of explosion it was, or if Pinky was dead or alive. I called my boss and told her I was leaving and arrived at the hospital within a half hour.
The emergency room guard gave me a pass to see Pinky, which was a good sign because I wouldn’t have gotten one if he was in surgery or otherwise unable to receive visitors. I beat Charlotte there so I was the first family member Pinky saw since the accident.
He was laying on the gurney with a steady stream of saline dripping into both eyes. He was conscious and coherent. I was relieved for that. Charlotte arrived shortly after I did and she was even more relieved that he could tell the story.
Pinky is a bus driver. It’s wintertime in Minnesota and it’s not uncommon for vehicles to struggle starting in this cold, cold weather. Pinky’s bus didn’t start, so he went to tighten the bolts on the battery. Pow. The battery done blowed up right in his face.
Charlotte and I kept him company in the emergency room while the staff spent hours irrigating his eyes and face. He looked amazingly well; in fact, I’d say he looked like he had a little sunburn, and that’s about it. There were some lacerations and bumps on his forehead, but nothing that required plastic surgery or even stitches. Charlotte is kind of excited that her husband might have a little bit of scarring on his face – very manly! There was also corneal damage in both eyes that is predicted to start healing within forty-eight hours and continue to heal to normal.
We got word today that Pinky will survive this incident, won’t lose his eyesight or dashing good looks, and definitely won’t end up looking like the Joker.
Pinky’s a badass for beating the odds and we’re all very relieved this episode didn’t cause more damage that it did. One very important thing to mention ~ Pinky was wearing protective eyeware when he was working on the battery. It most likely saved him from being blinded forever. Good thing Pinky considers safety first, contrary to his personal hero, Red Green, who takes all risks imaginable.
Tomorrow is Pinky’s birthday and he’s feeling well enough to have a birthday celebration. We’ll gather and toast forkfuls of flourless chocolate cake to Pinky’s life and be grateful he’s alive to tell the tale.