As he lay, first on a motocross arena track after an accident that rendered him quadriplegic and then during the long, terrible months of his initial treatment, Perepelkin recalled how he had escaped with only a broken pelvis when aged two, he was rescued from underneath a car while playing on his baby-sitter’s driveway.
So the second accident, he says, was like experiencing a sort of ‘déjà vu’, one that he also believes was somehow prophesied in a strange revelation he experienced in older childhood as a member of the Jehovah’s Witnesses.
Yet the Canadian builder and all-round sportsman is a no-nonsense realist who admits that motocross is an ultra-dangerous and physically demanding ‘extreme sport’.
”Like any motorised sport, it is dangerous. That is part of the attraction for those who choose to pursue it. Fortunately, fatalities and spinal cord injuries are relatively few”.
But he is among the ‘few’ and his memoir, The Perfect Life describes not only how his briefly idyllic marriage and family life was shattered in an instant but how he senses that what has happened to him is perhaps divine retribution for a previous life of crime that began with infant shoplifting!
I suggest that Perepelkin’s youthful bad behaviour was a way of recouping a stolen childhood – one that was snatched from him, first when his parents divorced and then when his mother and step-father forced him into a cheerless religious cult whose adult adherents literally doorstep on strangers’ privacy.
My copy of Perepelkin's book runs to almost 500 pages. It is a labour of love that he produced with more than four million keystrokes using a mouth-stick between his teeth.
Under the circumstances I am unable to offer his courageous effort an objective review. It would be unfair. Instead, I ask you to read it for yourself.
The Perfect Life is available for free download at Amazon on Kindle until Sunday 31 December 2017 or otherwise on Kindle ($6.15) and Paperback ($21.00).
© Natalie Wood (14 December 2017)