My car was hit by another car today.
I'm kinda annoyed at it.
Okay, that's not quite true. I'm more than annoyed by it. I'm pissed. However, being pissed doesn't seem to solve anything, so I'll just go back to being annoyed.
Right after I get the details down.
I went to San Jose today to drop off six boxes of books at 1dollarscan. I liked the quality of the scans, and wanted another bunch scanned. After having a relatively good experience dropping off the books, I made ready to leave.
My car was parked on East Santa Clara Street in San Jose, facing east, in the parking spot closest to South 3rd St. When I returned to my car, I pulled out my everyday notebook to write down the mileage of the car. I then started the car and looked in the rear view mirror to see about traffic.
There was a white truck in my rear view mirror, with a blonde woman driving. She was parked in the red zone behind my car, I presumed waiting for my parking spot. There was traffic still in the lane next to me, so I waited. After a few moments, I turned on my left turn signal to let the woman behind me know that, yes, I was going to pull out, but was waiting for traffic to clear before I did so.
I watched in my rear view mirror, and when all cars had passed, I checked my side mirror and did the lean-foward move that my Aunt Sonnie does to make sure no one is in her blind spot (wow, I hate that move, but understand the reasons for it). I then cranked the steering wheel left and started to pull out.
I was momentarily confused why I was stopped, then saw the white car next to me. Right next to me. As in, if I roll down the window, I could reach out and touch it.
I looked back over my shoulder and saw a black woman in the driver's seat, and a black man in the passenger seat. I was unable to move my car until she backed up, so I sat there and looked at them until she pulled her car back. I wondered, as I sat there, if she would drive away, but she didn't. She drove her car backward and parked her car in the red zone behind my car.
I reached for my phone and camera, looked to verify traffic was still clear, opened my car door and stepped out of my car. I briefly wondered if I should turn on the voice recorder in my phone as I looked at the damage to my car. I then walked back to her car.
Here's the damage to her car:
Which is to say, none.
There was no broken glass on the ground next to my car, so the broken headlight could not have been caused by her hitting my car. The other spots on her car have rust spots on them so clearly could not have been caused by this incident.
As I approached the car, I thought it odd that the guy who was in the front seat had made a dive into the backseat of the car. He was now sitting in the back seat of the car behind her, where "sitting" is a misnomer, as he hadn't fully finished his dive.
As I took a picture of her car, I was approached by a number of people, several of them appeared to be street people, saying "Ooooooooooo! She got you goooood!" and "Oh, you had an accident." One guy approached me and said, "I don't think you hit me," which puzzled me a bit, until he continued, "I'm parked in front of you," and pointed at his truck in front of my car. "Oh, good, I'm glad I didn't," I responded, then asked for his business card, which he gave me.
I then turned back to the woman in the white car (a Mustang) who hit me. She had gotten out of the car. I asked if she had insurance, which she did. I handed her my book and asked for her name and phone number, which she gave me by writing down in my book, and handed me her insurance card. It was a temporary card, issued a week before (on the 26th), which made me wonder how legitimate it was. I took a picture of her card, and wrote down the key aspects of her insurance, the company, the policy number.
I handed her a business card of mine, which, in retrospect, I regret doing. It's not hard to find me on the internet, no, but there's a difference between having someone google my name to find me, and handing someone the keys to my front door. I know the woman's car insurance information, and her phone number, and, well, she know pretty much everything about my life. Seems like a really stupid trade. I'll be making cards with just my phone number on them.
She didn't have any paper nor anything to write with when I tried to give her my insurance information. I asked her several times if she had a phone and could take a picture of my card. She said she didn't. I tore a page out of the back of my book (something I hate doing), and wrote down my insurance information for her.
When I had started taking down her information, the guy who was in the car with her hovered around us, repeatedly asking, "Are you going to call the insurance company? Are you going to call?" I didn't say anything about the insurance company until after he walked off to look at my car. I then turned to the woman and said, "I'm not going to call my insurance company," thinking it's going to cost me less to fix it myself than it is to file a claim and watch my rates go up. "If you call your insurance company, I will tell them exactly what happened." She looked at me and said, "Well, you hit me," I looked at her and repeated, "If you file a claim, I will tell them what happened."
Which is to say, she hit me.
The only way my car has the damage it does at the angle she came in was if she had made a hard right from the second lane over, into my car. My turn signal was on. I was moving slowly. There were no cars in the lane immediately adjacent to me as I was pulling out.
I speculate that the guy with her cranked on the steering wheel or they were having a fight when she swerved into the lane. That is speculation on my part, but she wasn't fully in the right lane when she hit me.
After our talk and exchange of information, I left, and drove around the block and parked, somewhat relieved the damage wasn't bad enough to prevent the car from moving. I sat there for a bit, fairly calm, surprised at the situation, gathering my thoughts about what happened.
I wish I had taken more pictures of her car. I wish I had gotten the name of the guy in the car with her. I wish it hadn't happened, but, well, it did, and getting all upset about it won't change the fact that my car's worth just dropped.
Mostly unrelated, the woman had startling eyes.
So, three things annoy me most about this whole thing. The first and most obvious is that my car was hit (I keep wanting to say "I was hit," but I wasn't hit, the car was, so I keep rewording that). That's going to be annoying to anyone. I now need to deal with having my car fixed.
The second thing that annoys me, and this part annoys me the most actually, is that the woman in the truck behind me who had the best view of what happened, left. She witnessed what happened, was the perfect observer to the incident, and as soon as it happened and the other driver started backing up, she left. The guy parked IN FRONT OF ME who couldn't have had more than the view in his side mirror came back and gave me his card, but the one person who could say exactly what happened just up and left.
The third thing that annoys me about all of this is that through no action of my own, I am now out money and time. I checked my rear view mirror. I checked my side mirror. I had my turn signal on. The road was clear. I wasn't doing any of the things that are typically associated with accidents: I wasn't speeding; I wasn't texting while driving; I wasn't on the phone; I wasn't swerving; I wasn't slotting; I wasn't driving aggressively; I wasn't tired; I wasn't driving at night; I wasn't driving in the rain; I wasn't pick something else that is generally associated with accidents and I wasn't doing it. I was pulling out of a parking spot and another driver with a passenger in her car hit my car. THAT frustrates me to no end. I did everything right, and still had something bad happen to me.
So, who knows if the woman is smart enough to know she has no reason to file an insurance claim. There was no visible damage to her car from the accident. She hit my car. It's between $800 (if I go cheap) and $3000 (if I go dealship-fix, replace with new parts) worth of damage to my car, assuming there isn't any suspension or axle damage. I'll have my car repaired, but, yeah, if she's smart, she'll realize that she has no reason to file a claim, as she'll be paying for the repair to my car, and her rates will go up.
If she's not, well, I'm okay having the dealership replace the front quarter-panel.