Don’t Walk!

by Tania Staniscia

One day a friend and I stayed after school to help our teacher tidy the classroom. When we finished wiping the chalkboard, I told my friend I would walk home with her even though it wasn’t my usual route.

My mom cautioned me never to walk the direction my friend lived, because it was a high traffic area. Despite her warning, I ignored Mom’s advice.

My friend and I started out on our way home. We stopped for a red light at a busy intersection. While waiting there, we had an idea for a game that seemed like a fun thing to do. We dared each other to run across the road when the ‘Don’t Walk’ signal started flashing in the opposite direction. I was poised to win this challenge.

As soon as the orange hand flashed, I darted across the road without bothering to look both ways. My friend saw the danger and tried to grab my arm, but it was too late.

In a split second I heard tires screeching and felt a sudden jolt that flung me sideways. I fell hard on my knees. I remember looking to my left and seeing a car very close to me. I screamed at the top of my lungs and bolted to the sidewalk to get off the road.

I was overcome by shock. I remember a flurry of activity around me. A lady held me while I cried for my mom. Traffic jammed in all directions until an ambulance arrived to take me to the hospital. Luckily, x-rays revealed I hadn’t broken any bones and I could go home to my family.

I came away from this ordeal with nasty bruises and a feeling of shame. I felt disappointed in myself for disobeying my mother and for acting so
irresponsibly. I realized that my judgement was very wrong and something much worse could have happened.

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