Monday, 15 July 2013

Graduation and missing a crash...

Son-of-Furtheron is now Son-of-Furtheron MPhys (Hons) ! :-)

We had a trip to Wales to see my son, his girlfriend and their friends graduate.  S-o-F also won one of the top prizes the department give out for outstanding academic achievement or something - he has worked immensely hard to get what he has.

It was a gloriously sunny very hot day - most unlike Wales!  All his friends had a great time, his dept took great care of us laying on a nice reception with plenty of food. Also for the first time we got to meet his girlfriends family, we all lined up for a big photo, us on one side and her family on the other and my son suddenly said "Hang on what is going on with this photo?" realising the likeness to the regular "new family" photo taken at weddings... it was a lovely lovely day finished off with us all having a lovely celebratory meal back at our hotel before the new graduates went off to the pub for the last time with all their friends.

They have found a flat to rent in the Midlands that is really nice and now PhD research awaits both of them later in the year.

Today I had a completely separate and different life afirming moment.  I was very nearly in a very very serious car crash.  I'd just joined a dual carriageway I regularly use, accelerated up to speed and pulled into the outside lane to pass a lorry when I saw police lights flashing ahead in the nearside lane - this dual carriageway has no hard shoulder, the police car was pulled in on the curb about 100 yrds back from a broken down car.  Now I saw the lights and slowed, the lorry on the inside of me carrying loads of oxygen etc. gas cylinders did not.  The policeman was out of the car near the back as the lorry violently swerved too late to avoid - it hit the car about 1/3rd in the back totally wreking it, then now tipped up on two wheels went straight into the barrier and onto the central reservation (luckily very wide at this point) by now it was onto it's side with gas canisters flying all over the shop and came to a rest about 200 yrds further on.

I can't believe the policeman wasn't killed, somehow he'd lept to safety.  The gas didn't ignite and the driver of the lorry climbed out.  It was some seconds before I stopped shaking and got out of the car and spoke to the policeman who was himself very shaken.  2 hours later they turned us all round to drive back off the road as the fire brigade and others worked to make the lorry and it's cargo safe and another hour to drive back to home the slow way which would normally still only take 15 mins or so, the traffic was gridlock for miles around.  However... I'm still here to tell the tale and give my statement to the police - I was very lucky literally a second of two earlier at that point and that lorry would have taken me into the reservation with it.   Holy Cow is all I think to say... just glad everyone was pretty much ok, the lorry driver was taken off to hospital but nothing serious mostly shock I believe and neck pain which given how he must have been thrown about in the cab is amazing it wasn't any worse.


  1. Yikes! Glad you're safe, Graham. Someone / something was looking out for you, eh? Sounds frightening.

    And congrats to son of...that's fantastic. Beaming dad!!


  2. What a harrowing experience! My lord, it's all so fragile, isn't it? It can go like that *snap*. Glad you're well.

    Congrats to him and you. His girlfriend's family must be extactic to have him as a potential in-law. What a catch! I hope my daughters do half as well.

  3. Wow, that must have been a very shaking experience! You did a good job describing it, as I feel I witnessed it as well. Amazing, isn't it, how narrowly we avoid accidents like that, which come out of nowhere and you see how suddenly and randomly things can change.

    Congratulations to your son on his graduation and upcoming move! Love his comment on the group photo.

  4. Holy crap! Congrats to your son and his girlfriend and thank the good Lord that you are okay.

    I always call those moments "toe-tingling" moments because once the adrenaline stops flowing, my toes start to tingle. It is NOT a good feeling.

    Take care of yourself,

  5. That was terrifying to read - imagine that it will have you rattled for quite some time! So very glad you dodged the smash up, and that no one was hurt.

    congratulations to S-o-F! High honors in Physics is no small task! Suspect he will go on to great things, wonderful explorations and a successful career in science! We need more of those types!

  6. Whoa. Just whoa.

    I was nearly hit by a driver while running in Ireland. The lack of shoulder on the roads made things quite tricky, even in areas where drivers were to expect pedestrians.

    I'm glad you're ok.

    And congrats on son of Futheron! That's terrific news.

  7. Good grief! Still--eight lives to go :) Very glad you managed to miss that one. I don't drive and I always find being in a car a nerve-wracking experience. Even more so now :)

    Congrats to Son and I'm sure he'll really enjoy and get a lot out of the PhD.

  8. I thank God for your escape, furtheron. It must have been terrifying.

    But I bet graduation was a wonderful day for you all.

  9. oh my......congratulations to your son and to you for still being here!!

  10. Your guardian angel was with you, Furtheron. I'm so grateful you're okay and so was everybody else.

    Many congratulations to your son!!!

  11. As everyone above has already said: bloody hell / congrats / stay safe and so glad you're alright !

  12. Oh my goodness, what a scary experience!!! Amazing that the guy survived. Glad you were able to stay out of it.