Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: North (05/05/16)
TITLE: Angels And Rivers
By Daniel Rae
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I took one last look at my empty home, settling for a final minute on the spectacular view. The sun was dancing on the placid sea, as boats all sizes, navigated the busy channel.
It was with the heaviest of spirits, that I turned and locked the door behind me.
I drove my car onto the bypass, headed North. I kniiew I was going to die, but as of yet, had not chosen the precise location. I'd woken early and put a rubber garden hose into my trunk, as well as some duct tape. It was 2014 and one could easily GOOGLE the instructions in detail. Steps that would help ensure success, when the final moments came.
I reflected for a moment on my last doctors appointment, only a few months before.
I knew him well, after 30 years of regular check ups, and as usual we discussed many details of my life. Mid discussion he stopped on a dime and took his glasses off. He looked closely into my eyes and solemnly explained that as my physician it was incumbent on him to ask me an awkward question: 'Have you ever considered suicide'? he asked.
My life must be a bonafide mess, if my doctor was concerned about me ending it.
There was no way I could have known then, just how ominous his words would be.
The path is bumpy now, merely logging access roads. Id turned off the highway and onto a dirt track that led to the base of Mt. Benson. As I drove further into the bush, I took regular pulls on the last fifth of vodka that I'd ever drink. By now the car was dipping and diving into the muddy pot holes, scraping the undercarriage. It was pitch black, deep amongst the towering Pines that flanked both sides of the makeshift road.
I turned the radio on to see if I still had reception. Instead the disc player rang out, a familiar melody filling the car. DC Talk, my favorite Christian band, was playing 'In The Light' one of their signature songs. I'd always wondered why music sounded so much better when I was stoned, every riff, every vocal, every bang of the drum, enhanced by the pollution in my veins.
Just as the song consumed me, my car plunged forward into a shallow but enthusiastic stream, crashing to a violent halt. Immediately the water began to penetrate the floorboards, while spraying my passenger side door, clawing at the right side window. I scrambled from the car and into the ice cold creek, immediately slipping, breaking my knee cap on a giant river rock. I laid there on my back, mostly submerged in the freezing water. The moment is entirely surreal, looking up at the star filled sky. DC Talk spoke loudly, 'In The Light' still entirely audible from my drowning car, despite the sound of the water racing past me, churning in my ears.
'*What's going on inside of me? I despise my own behaviour.'...'I'm still a man in need of a Saviour'.* ( DCTalk, Toby Keith ).
It was right there in that impossible situation that I literally screamed out to the Lord to save me. Not just from the swift stream that was precariously close to taking my life. But much more so to The Saviour in DC Talk's song. The ultimate Prince Of Peace.
As the cold and the dark overwhelmed me, the hope of being 'In The Light', brought an inexplicable peace to that desolate place. To a seasonal river, where a broken car and a broken man lay helpless in a turbulent stream.
But even as I laboured to keep myself coherent I started to fade; to succumb to the water and the pain and the unlikelihood of survival.
As I started to die, what felt like multiple hands, grabbed the scruff of my shirt and my belt and in a single motion, pulled me out of the icy river and onto a tuft of dry grass, completely free of danger. I quickly scanned the area, desperate to find my rescuers, the Angels that had plucked me from the water. But there was nothing there. Just the whispers of the towering Evergreens, behemoths in the light of the moon.
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