Sunday, November 13, 2005

Fortune Cookie With No Fortune

13 November 2005

After yesterdays’ announcement concerning the news of our poor broken and beloved truck now being reduced to junk, we were anxious for daybreak so that we could see with our own peepers the extent of the carnage. The truck had been retrieved from the highway where it was mortally wounded (and barely saved from being stripped down by the locals) and deposited back in our parking area for everyone to oogle.

I think that Michael put it best when he summed up our viewing as “going out and having a really great Chinese dinner, getting the fortune cookie, but when you open it up, there is no fortune.” Well, that’s about how anticlimactic the dead-truck viewing was.

Maybe part of it has to do with our expectation of walking up and seeing a Bonnie-and-Clyde-bullet-riddled-hulk with no windows left in it. In fact, it wasn’t that way at all. Walking around the front of the truck we saw about eight well-placed holes in the bumper and in the grill which made their mark on the radiator and engine. Looks like the shooters’ only intent was to disable the vehicle, not the passenger. As well-placed as their shots were, if they wanted to, I’m sure they could have taken the driver out of commission too.

One of the bullets careened off the front edge of the hood, pealing back an inch of paint and leaving an indent in the now-fresh metal, but not penetrating the hood. Both tires were nothing but rims with rubber strips and some of the belts sticking out off them. One bullet did penetrate the cab traveling through the side passenger door going through the passenger seat-back, through the back seat and coming to rest in the truck bed after it hit the hatch. We heard that another bullet came up through the cab a couple inches from the drivers’ knee. And that’s it! Like I said earlier, very anticlimactic.

When I was out running this morning, I saw a flat-bed truck roll past me with a GMC Jimmy on the back of it. The entire passenger side was strafed with various sized craters and its windows cracked and broken. After having been over here long enough, it is easily recognized as bearing all the typical markings of a vehicle caught in the middle of a mortar attack. I was thinking that the damage we saw from that is more like what we expected when we went to see our truck. When viewing both vehicles the first thing that comes to mind is the hope that the driver of the vehicle that just rolled past me was as fortunate as our driver had been. No injuries but one hell of a great story to tell the folks back home (and I’m not talking about the changing of your underwear-story after the event)!
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