A bloody arm, a near collision, suicidal mammals, and a $12.50 hot dog… (Edit: add tsunami sirens!)
In the first half of my walk today, I stopped at West Coast Game Park Safari’s gift shop. It was partly a nostalgic visit – we went there when our kids were little. They had a cute resident beagle that was pretty mellow most of the time I was there, but just before I left, she started jumping up on me. She was just playing, and she stopped when the clerk scolded her – but she did hit me pretty hard a couple of times. A little ways down the road I noticed that the sleeve of my white sweatshirt had a fairly large blood stain. When I rolled up my sleeve, I saw that I had about a dime-sized wound on my arm from the pup’s claws – I bled like a stuck pig for about 15 minutes. I cleaned it up with Purell & Neosporin, but spilled much of my water when I tried to scrub the blood out of my sweatshirt. I hope it’ll come out in the wash!
Later on, I saw a pickup truck coming toward me with its blinker on, intending to turn into a hidden driveway that I had just passed. There were 3 cars behind the truck, but the driver of car #2 apparently didn’t notice that everyone was slowing down and had to slam on the brakes almost right next to me. That horrible sound of tires screeching! Thankfully, that was the only sound I heard – he was able to stop in time to avoid a collision.
I finished my walk today at Langlois Market – Home of the World Famous Hot Dog! Okay, so I just HAD to get one (it was lunchtime, after all). I told Larry that it was quite possibly the best $2.50 hot dog I had ever had – thanks largely to their amazing homemade mustard. I had my hands full of hot dog, change, wallet, napkins, phone as I made my way across the street to wait for the bus. Hours later, I realized that I could only find $7.50 of the change from the $20 I used to buy the hot dog. So – I either got short-changed at the register OR I lost it between the store and the bus stop, carried away by the wind and some lucky passerby. Bummer. It was a great $2.50 hot dog, but not so great for $12.50.
After I got back to my car and started sightseeing, a deer busted out onto Hwy 101 & stopped right in the middle between the double-double yellow lines. All the cars were able to stop, and the deer just stood there contemplating its next move. One driver tapped his horn, and it scampered off into the brush. Shortly after, a fox loped out into the road and ran ahead of me for about 20 yards before exiting ‘stage right’.
But the animal that really got my attention was a mama skunk escorting at least 3 babies out onto Hwy 101. It was an undulating, mesmerizing ‘sea’ of black-and-white that didn’t register immediately. A passing lane had just started, and there was a pickup behind me that wanted to pass. Just as I was easing into the right lane I saw the skunks and swung back into the left lane. The pickup driver started to pass me on the right, then he also saw the skunks. By this time, mama’s nose was on the white line. I held my breath and watched in my rear view mirror as mama did a quick about-face, raised that tail and let-‘er-fly! The kids became black & white striped tumbleweeds, but I think they all survived – probably wondering where the hurricane came from and why mama farted on them…
Oh, but that wasn’t the end of the excitement for the day – A few minutes ago (in the 11:00 P.M. hour) the tsunami sirens started wailing. At present, I don’t know what that was all about, but my host family isn’t up and running for higher ground – so I’ll stay put as well.
A few of my favorite pics of the day:
Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him. ~ Psalm 34:8