I drove from Georgia to Texas today and was stuck FOR HOURS on I-20 cause of this accident, took me about 3 hours to go 7 miles:
I was bored so I started to play this game I was taught in college by my upperclassmen in the Corps. Ya see, I went to Texas A&M and was part of the Military College there on a Air Force Scholarship, Texas A&M being one of only 7 Military Colleges in the Nation (Service Academies Excluded)
Anyway, the game was our upperclassmen could walk up to us ANYWHERE, either on campus or out with our friends and they would make us close our eyes and describe the environment from memory without being given warning the question would be asked....it is something I do to myself now and again to keep my attention to detail as sharp as I can.
I pulled into Shreveport finally around 11 p.m. and was starved from being on the road all day, 1000 miles to cover in a day to get back to work and I wasn't stopping much since I was already behind because of the accident.
I was in the McDonald's drive thru and I closed my eyes to rest, there was a car in front of me before the drive thru window. When I closed my eyes I tried to name the make and model of the cars I had seen in the parking lot on the other side and the cars in line with me....I was mentally fatigued but I got at least the color and type Mostly correct. I also saw in my mind a bum going to enter the McDonald's side door....and this struck me as odd.
1. Only the drive thru was open so you couldn't get in since it was late.
2. There was no side door where I had seen him a moment before (you know the typical door at the end of the drive thru lane).........
My mind shot awake and my eyes open, the guy wasn't trying to get inside the McDonald's rather he was walking along the wall toward me. There was still a car in front of me and I looked between it and him trying to assess the situation and clear the fog from my tired mind. I saw he had his hands in his pockets of his sweater and while it was cold my mind though of the auto evasive training some of us Air Force Kids did with the Army boys.... I thought my mind was trying to play tricks on me until I looked to my right and in my Excursion's outwardly canted extra tow mirror another figure was approaching me from my right rear.
Oh SH!T.....don't panic I told myself until I realized I wasn't sure of their intent or IF there was even ANY intent, my mind raced thru evac rules and rules of engagement (I carry a concealed Permited Texas Pistol) we had pounded in our heads....the guy coming up on my right rear bumper stepped ever so closer to the truck and the guy walking along the wall in front of the car in front of me eyed me.
I had left a couple feet in front of my Excursion as I was taught to do in Driver's Ed back in high school so if someone bumps you from behind you won't hit the car in front of you and LATER learned in school that was a good tactic to employ so you can get out of a situation like I was in by not boxing myself in an not being able to get out of the line of cars.
I glanced at the 2 unknown adversaries and at this point deemed them as a threat. I turned my wheel sharply to the right and broke out of the line of cars. When I did this the slow moving guy in front of the car in front of me changed position from hugging the wall to running in front of the car in front of me in line and toward me as I shot out of the line of car. The guy behind me to my right, who I had ONLY seen since I have my towing mirrors on the Excursion and one of the mirrors is canted out to help see around a trailer in tow, moved quicker toward the truck but I took my eye off him as I scanned for other vehicles trying to block my path. As I scanned back to my left while avoiding the right rear bumper of the car in front of me the slow moving man walking along the wall who had now shot out in front of the car in front of me came toward the Excursion. Without thinking and now that I do it was a foolish move I threw open the driver's door into this guy as he came near the truck and I never looked back, I was on the interstate within 30 seconds watching for trailing lights and after 5 miles did not see any that finally relaxed a little.
WTF Happened, was it all a mis construed situation that I misjudged or did I avert something. I am not from the area and stopped on a whim, no preplanning at all on my part and nothing to trace me to a habit on the trip as with the 44 Gallon Diesel tank I can go 700 miles without filling up so I doubt they followed me from Augusta, Ga when I filled up last.
It is late and I am exhausted but I needed to get this down into words, I drove 17 hours today with the traffic jam and am exhausted so sorry if I rambled, it was just such a strange occurrence I had to write it down.
Guess I can thank all those stupid times it was engraved into my memory to be fully aware of your enviroment...in hindsite now a few hours removed I should of seen the CRAPPY cars in the parking lot and the amount of foot traffic at the intersection up by the gas station at that late night hour to surmise this was NOT a good place for me to stop and I should of gotten back on the interstate and gone to another part of town.