Tonight I was on the interstate about three miles from home when something struck my windshield with great force, shattering it. My initial reaction was, “That asshole. I’m chasing him down. ” Then I realized I couldn’t see to chase him because, you know, the windshield was shattered. Once I was pulled over to the shoulder, I took note of the damage. Basically, my windshield was spider-webbed from one end to the other, with a giant hole on the driver’s side at what would be a couple of inches above my head. I was covered in glass; it was in my hair, stuck to my face, all over my clothes, down my shirt — it was even in my shoes. I was afraid to unbuckle my seat belt and get out of the car because there was so much glass on me. I called 911.
I later learned that the semi (cab only) in front of me was towing another semi cab. The plate covering the fuel tank had flown off the truck, which was traveling at 70 mph (112 km) before crashing into my windshield. It struck with such force that the metal plate rended in two. One piece struck the SUV behind me; the other piece flew across the median and into the northbound traffic. The gentleman driving the SUV behind me chased down the driver of the semi cab and told him what had happened. (The SUV driver, as it turns out, is an insurance adjuster.)
Rocco came to take me home after I filed the police report. As soon as I got home, I called my boss and told her that I could be on call via phone, but if the night auditor at the hotel called in I could not possibly come in. You need to understand that I started this job four months ago and have been on call 24 hours a day, every day since the day I started. The only two days I haven’t been on call was the day my mother went into a coma and the day of the costume party. I get at least three work-related phone calls at home each night. I have been called in nine times to work the night audit, immediately after which I worked the day shift, pulling a double. My boss said, and I quote, “Who are you going to get to come in if the night auditor calls in?”
And… I can’t even finish the story. It is so long and detailed and infuriating that it’s kind of making me physically ill just thinking about it. So here’s all I’m telling you. The night auditor called in. The boss refused to take the shift.
I’m not kidding. Tonight I was almost decapitated by a piece of metal traveling 70 miles an hour. My car is not drivable. And my boss wanted me to work the night shift after working a nine-hour shift today.
I’m not doing it, by the way. After two hours of trying, we got someone to cover the shift until the auditor can come in. But I am furious and sort of nauseated.