I ran inside to grab my phone and call my husband to tell him what just happened. After I got off the phone, I looked back outside and the car was gone, the kids were gone, and the mailboxes and all our mail were still there, scattered across the other neighbor's yard. I was so angry. How do you just hit a mailbox and take off? Stupid teenagers. I went and picked it all up and gave our neighbor their battered mailbox and make sure they were aware of what just happened. I called and left a message on our landlady's cell phone and then there was a knock at the door. It was the teenage boy who hit the mailbox, apologizing profusely and letting me know he intended to pay for the damage. It restored a tiny bit of my faith in teenagers.
The neighbors had called the police and the sheriff showed up. Then a lady showed up, who I found out was the girl's mother. They live down the road and I guess he had taken her home and then came back to apologize. The girl's mother was not a happy camper. I think she suspected her daughter was driving, but I really didn't see them get out of the car, so I couldn't say. The boy was just a nervous wreck. We are the second house on the street, the mailboxes were in between mine and the neighbor's houses.... he had to have turned onto the road going crazy fast to take out the mailboxes and not stop for two more houses. I rarely let the girls wander in the front yard and never even remotely close to the road because people drive so crazy around here, but it still freaked me out. Mailboxes are replaceable, my children are not.
My landlady just happened to be driving by the house (Why? That's so weird...) and saw the police car in front of the house and she stopped. She hadn't gotten my message yet. So for almost an hour, we dealt with all the business of filing a police report and my kids asking me who was getting arrested (no one). It was insane. Before he left, the kid came back and apologized again. I was starting to feel a little bad for him, even though what he did was so irresponsible and dangerous and I shouldn't have felt bad one bit.
Later tonight, there was another knock at the door. By this time, I was getting more than a little tired of people knocking on my door. It was the kid again, this time with his father. He wanted to know if he could get the landlord's phone number so they could offer to put up a new mailbox. I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised by it all. I mean, you see so many examples of people who just don't parent their children. At first I thought that the kid had hit and run and it didn't surprise me one bit. But he came back and owned up to his mistake. And here was his father was taking responsibility, also, but still making sure his child was still taking responsibility. I would bet that he makes that kid work his booty off to pay for the mailboxes. I just didn't expect that and it gives me a little hope that despite all the parents who would just ignore the situation or who would shelter and protect their kid from any consequence, that there are enough good parents out there to make sure that today's teenagers become decent adults.