Once again, this past weekend I found myself in Humboldt Park and Little Village. I brought another friend down and our ultimate goal was shopping at the mall in Little Village, but first I wanted to go to the grocery story to make some Puerto Rican food at her place later that day, which turned out wonderful. We had pegao, tostones, arroz con pollo, frijoles y Jarritos y Jumex!
Anyway, we started out at the grocery store and then parked the car to walk around. I led her to the giant Puerto Rican flag and then some art and we were going to walk down the side road for even more art, when this big black car drove past us and came to a dead stop just past us. Let me tell you, my heart stopped and I did not move my eyes away from that spot. My friend and I slowed down and stepped just in front of her putting my arm out and we stopped moving.
Then the passenger door of the car opened and a young man leaned out and looked at us and he was holding some type of drink.
The moment that door opened, it was the scariest moment in my life, I don’t think I’ve ever experienced fear like that before. My stomach knotted, my heart hadn’t started to beat yet and I just stood there putting my hand in my pocket to grab my car keys. We weren’t that far away from my car and I guess it was my only form of defense if something awful happened. I was trying to think of what to do if they came at us or God forbid take out some sort of weapon.
He stared at us for what seemed like hours and then shut the door and they drove off and I told my friend to get in the car and we left too and drove to our next location instead of walk! I didn’t want them to come back.
It was probably nothing, they might have thought we were some people they knew and when they realized we weren’t, they closed the door and left. It was just such a random incident and in an area like that, I really don’t want to take any chances, especially with my friend there.
The hardest part about a situation like that is knowing that I would be physically incapable, even if they hadn’t any weapons, to defend myself. He was a big guy and I wouldn’t be any match against him. Not only that, what would I do if they came at us? It’s one of those times where you think about how you’d react in a situation and what would I do? There are just so many ways something like that could play out and so many different choices I can make to react to that.
It’s just one more thing that made me think about what I would do in a situation. After, it honestly felt like I had run 100 miles, I felt like I couldn’t catch my breath and my heart was racing once it decided to beat again, every muscle was tensed and I didn’t consciously think about any of that, it just happened, completely out of my control. That’s a weird feeling too, not only deciding how to react in an unpredictable situation but thinking about how your body can just act like that, create an intense feeling like that. It is an experience that I would never ever want to repeat again.
It was just on my mind today, so I thought I’d share.