Inconceivable! I sat in disbelief, stunned at the utterly shocking events that had just unfolded over the previous 50 minutes. A brutal finals week had just rendered one final blow that nearly brought my semester to a dramatic, screeching halt.
With a final at 10:30, I wasn’t leaving anything to chance. Knowing my 1993 Ford Ranger truck had recently been having some issues starting, I gave myself a 60-minute window to test the truck in case it needed a jump start. When my truck failed to start, as I had expected, I asked my roommate, Nikita Wall, to jump my truck with his car. We positioned the vehicles, hooked up the jumper cables, yet my truck still failed to start. Nikita kindly offered to drive me to Corban, five miles from our apartment, but when he turned the key to restart his car, there was no response. It was dead! When I had removed the jumper cables, I accidently let the ends off my truck touch the other ends, which were still connected to Nikita’s car. Thus, the resulting electric surge had fried his battery. Stunned, we sent up a desperate cry to the Lord.
Our other roommate, Sam King, was still in bed, but seeing no other option, I quickly ran inside, grabbed his keys and drove his car around to try and jump start Nikita’s car. One problem, though. In my frantic state of mind, I had placed my jumper cables back inside my truck, locked the door and closed it—with my keys still in the ignition! Now we had no jumper cables.
The clock now struck 10:00 a.m. I climbed into the truck bed to try to wiggle into the cab through the back window, while Nikita attempted to use a thin thread to unlock the door. After several minutes of unsuccessful efforts, I suddenly remembered Sam had jumper cables in his car. I quickly gathered them, but before I hooked them up, I decided to try starting his car just to ensure it still worked. I turned the key and…no response! Unbelievable! The count of dead vehicles now stood at three, all lined up side-by-side (sitting in our neighbors’ parking spaces). Sam then came outside and observed the graveyard.
At 10:20, when a neighbor’s truck failed to start either vehicle, I was beginning to calculate how much my grade would drop after receiving a zero on my final. With all vehicles out of commission, running to school appeared the only remaining option, but of course I’d miss most of the test period. Then, seemingly from out of nowhere, Nikita’s girlfriend, Jessica, appeared on the scene. Like a Salvation Army soldier, she rescued me and drove me to Corban where I sat down in the classroom at 10:32, understandably quite frazzled, but overwhelmingly relieved to have arrived in time for the test.
Craig Bookenoogen, our fourth roommate, had left for Corban earlier that morning and was sitting in the computer lab when he received a phone call from Sam.
“You need to come back to the apartment,” Sam told him. “My car is dead. So is Nikita’s. And Drew’s.”
“What are you talking about?” Craig replied, puzzled.
“You’d better just come home. It’ll take a while to explain.”