Have you ever had a frightening experience? I think most people have had what they might consider their most frightening experience. I think the most frightened I have ever been was one day in summer several years ago. I would like to share with you my most frightening experience.

It was on a bright sunny afternoon after my water exercise class. I was driving north away from LaFollette Park when I made a right turn at Hirsch Street and stopped at the stop sign at Leamington Avenue. I made a left onto Leamington Avenue and stopped the car at the stop sign at LeMoyne Street. I was about to turn left on LeMoyne Street when a car pulled up behind me. It then moved abruptly over to my left. I thought the driver of the car was in a hurry, so I decided to wait and let him turn first. Instead of the driver turning left, a young man who sat in the back seat stepped out. He stood behind the opened door on the right side of the car. He held a gun in his hand and seemed to point it straight at me.

“Oh, God!” I moaned, my hands clenched on the steering wheel. “Don’t let me die.” “Is this my last day to live on earth,” I asked myself. I wondered what had I done so bad that someone wanted to kill me. My first instinct was to hide. I tried to squeeze my head under the steering wheel. However, there was no room to hide my head. I ended up bumping my forehead on the steering wheel several times. I couldn’t think rationally. I sat immobilized, wondering what to do next. Just then, a car going east entered the intersection, and the gunman with his arm braced over the top of the back door fired the gun at the car as it was passing through the intersection. I heard ‘pow, pow, pow,’ and I saw red sparks coming from the gun after each shot. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing.

A gang-banger armed on a beautiful afternoon with the intent to kill someone. After firing the three shots, the gunman got back into the car with the other two gang-bangers who sat in the front seat. The car made a fast left turn. The brakes squealed as the car rounded the corner. It made a right turn into the alley heading north. Meanwhile, the car that had been shot at was still in sight. The driver didn’t increase his speed nor did he make any attempt to get away. I believed at the time that he didn’t know he had been shot at. I watched him until he reached the next street. He made a right turn slowly, as if he didn’t have a worry of any kind.

During this time, I hadn’t moved an inch. My foot was still on the brake, and I hadn’t moved the gearshift to Park or Neutral. Somehow, I wanted to release the stress in me. I felt like crying, but instead of crying I took on another fear.

I was too scared to turn onto LeMoyne Street. I imagined the gang-bangers were waiting for me. After all, I was a witness to a potential crime. Although I looked directly at them, I couldn’t identify them. I also thought they might be mad at me because I had stopped someone from being hurt by being in the way. I was still unable to move. I didn’t know what direction to take. My mind was locked like a cast iron safe. Whatever I had stored inside stayed, but when I needed it, I couldn’t remember the combination.

I was jolted back to reality by the sound of car horns. I realized cars were going around me making left and right turns. I had to move. I made the left turn and headed home, still somewhat afraid. What about your most frightening experience? Was it more or less frightening than mine?