Every Friday morning when I am in town, I have breakfast with Ed the Artist -- and another friend when he is here.
We usually talk about needs at the Indian school for the migrant worker children. But there are no borders on conversation. We push each others' buttons now and then. But that is one of the liberties of friendship.
Last week, I was running a bit late for one reason or another. But I was not rushing. What's the point? This is Mexico.
The main highway crosses the laguna just before passing through my destination village. I could see a motorcycle in front of me. Maybe about 10 car lengths.
Ed rides a motorcycle. Thinking it might be him, I slowed down a bit. We could arrive at about the same time.
The next thing I saw was the motorcycle cartwheeling forward. Making at least three or four revolutions. Of course, I was now really worried that it might be Ed.
I have seen many a motorcycle go down on the road and on the race track. They usually slide.
Not this one. And I instinctively knew that a rider exposed to the road on a cartwheeling motorcycle would not be a good thing.
And it wasn't.
I was the first to pull up. Within seconds there were two other men on the scene helping. The first task was to get the motorcycle off of the rider. It was not Ed.
I grabbed my telephone to call for an ambulance while retrieving my first aid kit from my truck.
But in the time it took me to return, someone else had completed the call. And whatever was wrong with the rider, my first aid kit was not going to help. He could not move.
What did help was the arrival of the fire emergency crew. And then an ambulance.
While they tended to the rider, we started clearing the street of various motorcycle parts. And one big dead dog. A second dog had limped off into the laguna, probably to be a crocodile meal, just as we arrived.
I can only surmise that the motorcyclist hit one or both dogs and panic braked on his front wheel. Whatever happened, his motorcycle performed actions for which it was not designed.
When I finished breakfast, I returned to the duplex and told Dora, the maid, what had happened.
Yesterday morning she told me the rest of the story. The motorcyclist had died.
Of what, I don't know. Like most riders around here, he wore no helmet. But I am not certain that would have mattered with the forward rolls he took with his bike.
We will all have our own lessons to draw from this tragedy.
Mine is: life is fragile. If we remain aware of that fact, we might treat others in our lives with a bit more respect and love. I know I need to work on that.
Note -- There is no photograph with this post because I took no photographs at the scene. If I had, I trust you would have lost any respect you might have for me. Even though that type of photograph is daily grist in some Mexican newspapers. But not this blog.