An update on me. My Crash and a message (Warning post gets deep!)

vincechu

Veteran
Sep 14, 2010
68
Hi everyone,

Here's a brief update on my life

I'm sorry, this is loooooooong over due!

Time sure has flown by, and some how or another it's already Feb 2012 - it felt like just yesterday since I graduated in July 2011 lol.

When I graduated last July I thought I'd finally have more time for photography... boy I was wrong! I was going through an 'off-photography period' (see here, there's some excellant advice which I'm very thankful for there, a good read for anyone) and was working around 60hours a week up until Christmas as well as job hunting (looking to become an accountant).

Well, in all that busy-ness before Christmas I got back into photography thanks to Best-Buy in the UK closing down... no seriously, in their closing down sale I picked up a Panasonic G3 on the cheap and have since picked up a few lenses. In short, it's IQ is great, miles better than the G1 I used to have. It's also a great size and weight for carrying with me all the time - My K5 definately has better IQ and ergonomics but it's just too heavy/big, so it's now my bad weather camera only (think it'll go after the OM-D E-M5 is available).

This 2012 I'm working less (50hours a week lol). In addition to helping the family business, I am now a part-time accountant (whilst I look for a rather elusive full-time accounting training contract) in Manchester (great because its a big UK city with lots of photo opportunities!



Now onto my crash and a 'message'...
(Warning in advance gets 'deep' towards the end lol)

Rewind back to December 2012, in the UK we had been pretty snow free until the weekend starting on the 16th. The temperature dropped sharply and all the snow seemed to come down at once, in what the weather forecast and papers were calling the big freeze (swear they say this every year when temperatures drop!)

That Sunday 18th December, most of the snow had cleared off in my town and I knew it was freezing cold (-4*c). That night I was driving slowly because I knew of the dangers of black ice, especially because the roads in my aren't always gritted often. I took a very sharp left turn onto a road at walking pace, and began to build up my speed on the country road, I was doing less than 30miles per hour and the road went back around to the right... when suddenly my car lost its grip on black ice... it swerved onto the otherside of the road and gained momentum, clipping the curb the front end went up into the air, and into a hedge which flipped my car, rolling it a few before coming to rest like this:


IMG_20111218_211511 by VinceChu89, on Flickr

Note this was taken after the scene was made safe by the authorities. Taking a photo of this was the last thing on my mind but I kind of automatically took a photo of the wreck after seeing my brother (who had come to collect me) take some photos on his phone, for future reference e.g. insurance purposes.


The accident happened so fast, yet the moment in which the car was in the air and rolling felt so long! I had never been so scared in my life, my legs were literally like jelly - I could barely stand after smashing my passenger window and climbing out of it.

Miraculously I was unharmed - thank God there wasn't any on coming traffic because my car came to rest on the other side of the road, with me hanging in the drivers side facing on coming traffic - I doubt they would have been able to stop in time on that black ice. I guess I was really lucky, or as the officer who attended the scene put it,' someone was watching over me that night'.

You see these kinds of things on TV or internet but never think it's going to happen to you, and I did especially because I always take care and drive responsibly. It just felt so unreal - like I was having a bad dream.

For a few weeks after the crash, I had this weird fear of going around even the slightest bends to the right as a passenger. I guess it reminded me how powerless I was when my car lost grip and rolled. I know I'm young but trust me I've seen how cruel life can be, and I guess this car crash really opened up my eyes to how fortunate I am and to what a comfortable, if somewhat lazy life and unfulfilled, life i had been living. To me, this was a real wake-up call to me to start living life to the fullest but most importantly to cherish every moment and grasp every opportunity!

I guess this leads me on to why I love photography and what it is to me, I love photography because it allows you to capture and immortalise (probably the wrong word) even the smallest or most fleeting moments. (fleeting is probably wrong word again? lol give me your suggestions). A long time ago I think I asked 'what photography means to you?' (to everyone here or over at mu-43) and I remember Don (I think it was Don anyway) said that photography to him is capturing the human condition and also 'proof that we were here' and at time I didn't even think twice about that idea, but now I think I understand what that means, and that it's become a more important concept to me.

Hope that wasn't too deep lol ;-) anyway...

Take care and live life to the fullest everyone!

Here's a few photos to end, I don't think I've shared them here before, some have been on Flickr for a while though - apologies in advance if I have double posted them! (also think my monitor is off calibration so let me know if anything looks out of the ordinary)

View attachment 49682
P1010293 by VinceChu89, on Flickr

View attachment 49683
P1010294 by VinceChu89, on Flickr

First two - hope I PP-ed the photos to look like my mum was upset, she was just running her hand through her hair whilst on the phone and rubbing her eye which was dry due to contact lens wear.

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

Captivity. by VinceChu89, on Flickr


Birdman by VinceChu89, on Flickr


The Iron Lady by VinceChu89, on Flickr
The nick name iron lady is a little iron-ic (sorry couldnt help the pun) as there is a rusty metal bolt or something or other on her face. Funny how the advert itself is folded over on her skin too look like wrinkles

View attachment 49687
Emily at Selfridges, Oxford Street by VinceChu89, on Flickr

View attachment 49688
Emily at Queens Park by VinceChu89, on Flickr

View attachment 49689
IMGP5076 by VinceChu89, on Flickr
 

Luckypenguin

Hall of Famer
Dec 24, 2010
123
Brisbane, Australia
Nic
Dude, that's heavy! You certainly were lucky to come out of that unscathed. An event like that certainly does open your eyes to how quickly things can turn upside-down (literally, in your case).
 

vincechu

Veteran
Sep 14, 2010
68
Thanks :) Glad to see you're still around on the forums, hope I'll be back for a longer spell now ;-)
 

BBW

Administrator Emeritus
Jul 7, 2010
123
betwixt and between
BB
Vince, thank goodness you are OK! I have been in car accidents myself, but my car never flipped over. You were so lucky to be safe after that and thankfully you had the wherewithal to break your way out of the window!

I give you great credit for taking your life by the horns, so to speak, and for making the most of it. None of us knows what our timing is, but when something like that happens, it can really shake you up to the tenuous nature of it all.

Thank goodness you are safe and sound - and I'm so glad you've told us and that you've shared all of these pictures with us, Vince. Glad to know your mother wasn't crying and extremely glad to see Emily, too....and I've always loved The Birdman.:drinks:
 

olli

Super Moderator Emeritus
Sep 28, 2010
123
Sofia, Bulgaria
olli
Hey Vince. Glad to hear you're okay. I know exactly how you feel. A few years a go we slid, hit a kerb and flipped at 70mph on a Greek motorway. I remember ever moment - in slow motion - when we were in the air to this day. I distinctly remember thinking 'We're dead'. In the end we walked away. It's incredible how strong and well-protected cars are these days. I think if it had been any of the cars my dad had while I was a kid we would definitely have been in a bad way. I recognise that nervousness about getting back in a car too. It passes with time but it can take a while.
 

stillshunter

Super Moderator Emeritus
Nov 5, 2010
123
Down Under
Mark
Mate good to have you back in good spirits and in one piece. You've been missed my friend. Be sure to visit and upload whenever you can...and take care now you here! :2thumbs:
 
Sep 8, 2010
123
London UK
Andy
Geeeze thats a nasty accident! Amazing what can happen even at slow speeds! Glad you'reOK. Living in the UK myself i know how bad the weather can be.

Keep taking those great pics and live life to the full every day!!
 

bartjeej

Hall of Famer
Nov 12, 2010
124
bart
wow, thank goodness for modern car construction, and that there was no oncoming traffic! And indeed great advice about taking life by the horns, I feel the same as you do about your life before the accident, my life so far has been mostly comfortable, fortunate and too lazy, as if I'll live forever... I'm aware that I should make more of it but so far I have made only small steps in that direction.

Those are some great photos, by the way. The bird man is the only one I remember having seen before (and perhaps the second one of Emily?), but it's a great one to see again :) looking forward to seeing some more of your work again, I've always enjoyed it!
 

christilou

Legend
Jul 13, 2010
164
Sunny Frimley
Wow, Vince. Very lucky escape. I was reading about a lady who sees Guardian Angels yesterday in the paper. Seems like you must have one watching over you. Nothing like a short, sharp shock to give you a bit of perspective though! Happy snapping ;)
 

chromatin64

Veteran
Apr 26, 2011
104
A Leekist in York, UK
Crap exposure and composition on that pic Vince. And that central light is just one blown highlight. 3/10 could do better.

*/looks around/* What?












Glad you're OK, Vince. Another reminder that life is too short.
 

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