Death brushed my shoulder in Zurich on a cloudy April morning. Seven months pregrant, my belly a flag swelling before me, I stepped into the street following the heels of a (beloved) man hurrying to buy cheeseburgers for a Euro.
This Zurich was not quaint like Salzburg and most of Bavaria. The streets were broad and modern highrises reflected metallic shadows that chilled my neck. The Golden Arches were twinned smiles in reverse though--a familiar welcome--and they beckoned me (reckless) into danger.
I am American. I don't speak Swiss. I don't speak the language of trolleymen. How was I to know that his impatientbleatbleat meant stop instead of go? Graciously forgiving most minor faults, I impose that gentility on others (often misreading). Who would plow down a girl with bouncing ringlets a wide smile a swollen belly?
I trotted into the street/the trolley's bell became a whine that didnotstop/itwascoming/Icouldn't turnback/itwasgoingtohitme
Sobbing/laughing? Angry/relieved? I felt the chill wind of the trolley passing at my heels as I tumbled running into my beloved's wiry arms. On a drear April morning in a cold city in Switzerland, my belly swollen with child, I ran faster than death.