The Mystery Of...Who Hit The Truck???

Most people will agree that fender benders tend to come with the teenage driving territory.  My own children were no different.  However, the number of fender benders that occurred in our own driveway was quite remarkable.

Robby has this rule that absolutely drives him up the wall when disobeyed.  When parking in our driveway, one must pull all the way forward.  The reason for this is because when everyone is home, there are a lot of vehicles and if someone does not pull forward, they may block the garage...thus, blocking him in...and keeping him from moving his vehicle when he chooses.  I know, I know...this is not a big deal to me (and honestly how many times does he really need to move his vehicle?), however, this is one of his "pet peeves".  On the night in question, everyone was home...and THAT, in turn, made everyone a potential suspect.  With vehicles piled in the driveway, cooking and conversation going on, along with the television blaring, it is no wonder that this little incident occurred without a soul even noticing.

David went out to his truck to get his suitcase and came back inside to announce that his truck had been hit.  This announcement was made quite matter of factly, so no one ran out to inspect the damage at that point.  Then, he said, "Yea, I had to get in on the passenger side because the diver's side is dented in and I can't open the door."  No THAT got our attention.  I kept piddling in the kitchen while Justin sat Indian style with a knit hat on, typing on his laptop.  David then appeared to become a little more upset about the "dent" and stated, "It has blue paint on it; whoever hit me was in a blue vehicle."  Justin, never looking up from his computer screen, replied, "It was probably the guy who came to fill the gas tank out back...I think his truck was blue."  At this point, Robby decided to go outside and assess the damage.  Upon returning inside, he was NOT happy, remarking, "Somebody knocked the heck out of his truck.  There is no way they didn't know when they did it, either."  Justin piped up again, "I told you it was probably that man driving the gas truck who hit it."  After a good bit of discussion back and forth about that possibility, Justin finally convinced him that, that was what had happened.  "Get me a phone book...I'm calling the gas company...this is ridiculous!", Robby said.  About that time, Ryan sauntered into the living room...and discussion that was taking place.  Without ever raising his voice, he stated quite simply, "I bet Caitlin hit it; her car is blue."  All activity ceased, while every eye in the room focused on him.  WHAT?!  "No way", I defended her.  "She would NEVER hit a vehicle and just leave."  With telephone book still in his hand, Robby instructed someone to..."GET HER ON THE PHONE RIGHT NOW!"  Of course, all of the boys were more than happy to do that; for to see their little sister FINALLY get into trouble was a moment in time they were going to truly savor.

We could only hear one side of that telephone conversation, but it was clear that Caitlin was indeed the culprit...she had committed the "driveway hit and run!"  She was told to return home IMMEDIATELY, and as he awaited her arrival, Robby paced the floor and mumbled under his breath possible punishments he intended to dole out.  She entered the house teary eyed...which had absolutely no effect on her father at that point in time.  He ordered her to her room.  As he shut the door behind them, three more sets of feet could be heard scurrying across the floor.  As I peeked around the corner, I observed her three older brothers eavesdropping outside her doorway.

The punishment was meted out...there would be no more driving for a while.  Ugh!  That meant that I would once again be responsible for getting her to and from school...almost a punishment for me.  Although the conversation was not pleasant, Robby explained, as usual, that there are consequences for every action.  If only she had come inside and explained what had happened, instead of heading to a friend's house to discuss what she had done, those consequences would have been different.  As it turned out, she never committed another "hit and run".  When she hit the tree at the end of our driveway some year later, she DID come inside to inform us of that.  Teenage drivers...what can I say?  It's ALWAYS something!

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