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Old 12-03-2012, 12:58 PM   #1183
Joined: Sep 2007
Oddometer: 516
It was twilight as I left for work yesterday morning. The darkness was giving way to light but the remnants of overnight fog precluded seeing any signs of the sun’s morning glow on the eastern horizon. I made my way through the neighborhood towards the Interstate as I always do when heading to work.

The roads in the neighborhood are winding and narrow – narrow enough in places, two SUVs moving in opposite directions would have difficulty passing without touching. There are no paved or graveled shoulders anywhere along the roads. If you go off the pavement, you are either in a ditch or someone’s front yard. There are lots of trees and bushes in the yards, as well as in the fields between the houses. The posted speed limit is 25 mph. Given the morning twilight conditions, I’m religiously sticking to 25 mph or less.

It’s approximately four miles from my driveway to the exit from my neighborhood. After travelling about three and a half miles, I turn right and straighten out on the road which will take me out of my neighborhood and onto the Interstate. Just ahead on my right is a yard with several large bushy trees close to the road. As I approach the bushy trees, a voice from the crow’s nest suddenly calls out ”Captain!!! Enemy sighted, close off the starboard bow!!!” Two deer have come into view just past the cluster of bushy trees.

I’ve encountered deer in my neighborhood many times in the past and to date, all encounters have been uneventful. These two deer however are only a couple of yards from the edge of the road. Having been hidden by the cluster of bushy trees they are closer than any other deer I’ve previously encountered! No sooner has the presence of these two deer registered when two more deer come into view behind them – it’s an entire enemy squadron!!!

“Captain to crew—clear decks for action!!! Standby to initiate evasive maneuvers!!!”

As we all know, deer can be quite skittish and bolt unpredictably in any direction, at any time. At this very moment however, I’ve yet to observe any sign these four deer are adversely reacting to my presence and thus I may have a brief moment of tactical advantage. I begin rolling off the throttle and applying some brakes. As there is no oncoming traffic, I prepare to move over towards the left side of the pavement to create more distance between myself and the nearby hostile force.

As events are unfolding, my velocity continues to move me forward and as such, more of what is behind the bushy trees is coming into view – Six deer!!! EIGHT DEER!!!! The enemy has sent an entire armada to ambush me!!! I’ve NEVER encountered this many deer on the road at one time. What have I done to make the deer so angry at me this morning? …and behind deer seven and eight there is --- wait a minute…. is that a sleigh? ….and in the sleigh, ….a replica of a fat, bearded man in a red suit?

“Captain to crew – forces off the starboard bow deemed non-hostile. Stand down and resume normal operations.”

I didn’t need a morning cup of coffee when I arrived at work.
Experience IS NOT the best teacher! Someone else's experience is the best teacher.
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