As I drive home, my car is filled with the smell of smoke; I can't get rid of it, despite the windows being open all the way. My jumpsuit smells of smoke, my clothes smell of smoke, even my hair smells of smoke. And the smell evokes visual flashes that I don't want, don't need:
The burnt out hulk of the car in the field;
The lifeless face staring up at me, a mute appeal for help that I cannot provide;
The child, her physical injuries so minor, yet her emotional scars already evident in her glazed look, her cries, her questions about her mother;
The passers by, who have tried so hard to help the dying woman and her child, who sit by the side of the road, stunned by how fast their everyday journeys home have been transformed into a nightmare of screams, sirens and CPR. And smoke.
11 months ago