Monday, December 14, 2015

Looking Around a Blind Curve (Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge)

As a student at Mines, I was pleased to learn that my new spouse shared a love of road trips into the mountains, especially as I did not have a driver's license then. We would rent or borrow a car, take off from campus, and enjoy the "Rocky Mountain's majesty" just a few minutes from the borders of Golden, Colorado.

One memorable incident (that made me very happy I was not behind the wheel) occurred as we drove a rented car to Frasier, Colorado, during the ski season. The road led through the Winter Park ski area, a popular destination for students in the Denver area. Winter Park's lifts were just down a snowy slope from the highway.

My spouse had years of experience driving in snow and on the mountain roads, and was a careful operator of any car, but especially in a rental. Even so, the packed, icy condition of the road was a challenge.

We would be indebted to the looky-loo behavior of a truck driver, driving toward us on the same road, who had more visibility of what lay ahead than we did, and who was willing and able to warn us. But it was my driver's split-second response to the situation, and driving skills, that saved us all.

I share it with you for the Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge this week:

December 9, 2015 prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less) write about a looky-loo. It can be in the general term of “looking around” or it can be a nosy neighbor kind of tale. You can also go deeper into the prompt and have a looky-loo at another culture (or your own).

I've often wondered what the skiers' laundry looked like that night when they got home!


Looking Around a Blind Curve

The snowy curves of the Frasier road were packed slick.

Far ahead, a semi-truck blew his horn urgently, heading into the same blind hairpin we were approaching. "What's he honking about?" I asked. 

My savvy driver replied, "I'm not sure, but I think I'll slow down!"

Around the corner, some skiers skipping the tow fees were unloading from a car parked inside the curve. Our skid took us 360 degrees, halting on the steep road-edge. The semi barely missed us, passing with its horn still blaring.

The panicked skiers loaded back into their car and left without a word.