Thursday, August 02, 2007

It's not supposed to happen here...

I live in a Minneapolis/St. Paul suburb. I was driving home after my martial arts class last night when a co-worker called to ask if I drive over the 35W Mississippi River bridge to get home. I said no and she said "thank God." I asked why and she told me about the bridge collapsing.

These things are not supposed to happen in "my backyard." Maybe in San Francisco where they have earthquakes. Maybe in Texas or Florida where they have hurricanes. We have tornadoes but usually there's enough warning to go hide. But it did happen here. I won't speculate on why the bridge went down. I'm not any more qualified than the experts who are themselves not ready to speculate.

My first reaction was...well...I sort of froze. I was driving at the time so I had to keep doing that. But my emotions didn't know which way to go. Anger that it could happen? Well, my anger wouldn't do anything about it. There were/are people under those bridge parts.

Right now, there's only one thing I can do. And that is pray. I pray for comfort for the injured. Comfort for the families of those who are known to have perished. Comfort for those who don't know yet if their loved ones have died or are just somewhere else, safe and sound.

I also pray for courage and safety for the people who are trying to get the bodies out of the water. I pray for their protection from the swirling waters and unstable bridge parts and rebar that could really hurt them.

I thank God for the people who were willing to risk their own lives last night and help others escape from their vehicles and get them to dry land. There were many heroes at the scene.

And I thank God my son and, so far as I know right now, my friends are all safe.

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