Last night, Carol and I were out for our nightly walk. We were talking about the various challenges and problems of the day, when we heard a crash behind us. We both spun around, and saw something had happened two or three blocks back along San Mateo Drive.

“Dan!” said Carol. “Do you have your cell phone? you better call 911.”

It looked like a motorcycle had crashed. It looked bad, but I was reluctant to call 911, only to have them get mad at me because it was only a fender bender. We started jogging towards the crash; I punched “911” into my phone and was ready to hit the send button; but before we had gone a block, we could see that a police car had already arrived at the site.

By the time we got to the crash site, we could see a cop standing over someone lying on the sidewalk, shining a flashlight on whoever it was. Her police car was parked so as to block two and a half of the four lanes of San Mateo Drive. The motorcycle was lying on its side a hundred feet down the road from where the person was lying, and pieces of it were scattered across the roadway. Then it looked to me like the cop stood up suddenly and took a step back.

Soon, another police car arrived and parked next to the first police car, and the first cop moved her car and parked it across the other end of the block. Then two more police cars arrived. We started walking away, wondering why there were so many police cars coming. I called out to the first cop as we walked by, “We heard the crash but we didn’t see anything”; and Carol added, “But there were no other cars.” The cop, in a shaken voice, replied, “No, it was a solo.”

As we walked home, we talked about what we had seen. Why had that cop arrived at the scene so soon? Had she been chasing the motorcycle? It looked like they were treating it as a crime scene; was the motorcyclist dead? Two fire engines went down San Mateo Drive towards the crash; then another police car; then, at long last, an ambulance. We had completely stopped talking about the various problems and challenges of the day; the crash had put things into a different perspective.

There was nothing in the news about the crash. Tonight, we walked by the crash scene, but we couldn’t see anything. We’ll probably never know what really happened.