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Friday, February 4, 2011

Montana February 2010 Part 12

Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2010 arrived at finish line at 3:10AM with time to spare. At the banquet I thanked Melanie and Doug. He had just gotten in from Arizona. I told the story about my shoulder, Doug and Rodeo. I said that I had found a sport I really liked and would be back and would be better. I suggested that Rodeo was watching all this from his skybox. After the banquet, I went to the ranch and packed. I got to bed at 1AM and up at 3AM. I felt OK, but was a little tired. No problem, I had driven like this before. I would just have to get something to eat while I was driving to keep me awake. As I drove out of the yard, I thought about turning left and going into Lincoln, to get something to eat. I got a strong premonition that said, “No, turn right.” As I drove down the dirt road, I again thought about turning left and going into Lincoln. I again had a strong impression that I was supposed to turn right. When I got to the stop sign at the end of the road I started to turn left, to go into Lincoln to get something to eat. Again I had an overwhelming feeling that I should turn right and head to the airport. I reasoned that it would be OK, since there was a convenience store about 45 minutes away, in that direction, and I would be OK until then. When I got to the store it was closed. All I could do was buy a bottle of Sprite from the machine outside. The wind was blowing and it was cold. I wasted no time in getting my drink and getting back inside the car. As I drove away, I was wishing I had something to eat, to keep me awake.

I nodded off a couple of times and did everything I could think of to stay awake. No big deal, I had done this before with no problems. I had no time to pull over and sleep. I needed to be at the airport in an hour to check in. I kept on driving. I felt a bump on the right rear tire and awakened to find myself skidding to the left. I had fallen asleep and run off the side of the road, hitting the right rear on the hard packed pile of snow. I corrected and cut the steering wheel to the left. I over corrected and spun the rear end to the right. I tried to correct again and turn the steering wheel to the right. I was oscillating violently now; the car spun out of control and turned 180 degrees, sending me down to road backwards. With each oscillation I had yelled, “No, No, No.” The rear end of the car hit the hard packed snow on the opposite side of the road and I went airborne. The passenger side of the car struck a large Ponderosa Pine and rolled over onto the roof. I yelled, “Shit.”  I had wrecked Melanie’s car. It was 5AM.

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