Monday, September 3, 2012
Before I knew it, it was there. There was no notice, no "Hey, I'm running by," nothing.
It had been a perfectly beautiful motorcycle ride. The September air was warm and the feeling of autumn was far away. There were no clouds, the mountains could be seen for miles.
My friend and I had been riding through the countryside of Washington, going to get a peek of Mt. Adams. We hadn't a care in the world and were thoroughly enjoying every second of our Sunday ride.
Then it happened. It was so fast that I didn't have a chance to react. Out of the corner of my eye I saw a brown fluffy tail, then felt a thump, a thumb beneath each of my tires. I couldn't look back, I couldn't look in the mirror. It had to have died.
Then a terrible thought entered my mind, what if I'd only injured it? My friend was right behind me and I knew he would also feel those thumps, then it would surely be dead.
I couldn't get it out of my mind for the next half hour. I couldn't believe I hit something, I couldn't believe I killed something. No matter what I tried to fill my mind with, thoughts of the horrible act kept creeping back.
Finally we came to a stop. I got off my bike and pulled off my helmet. As I was shaking out my hair he walked up to me. I asked him if he saw what had happened.
As only he can do, he began laughing so hard I thought he might actually have a heart attack.
As his laughter subsided he managed to get out, "Teri you NAILED it! It jumped out of the woods, ran into the road and BOOM, you killed it! Then I hit it, so I'm sure it's dead."
"But WHAT was it?"
"What do you mean what was it? It was a squirrel, what did you think it was? Sasquatch?"
I could feel my eyes stinging with tears.
"Teri, it was a SQUIRREL!"
"I know, but there's probably squirrel guts all over my bike!"
|The Columbia River Gorge|