Friday, September 19, 2008

Holding Steady

I looked in my rearview mirror and thought to myself he's taking that corner rather fast. I'd just turned onto the highway and in my mirror I could see his vehicle barely slowing down to take the same corner. He was my neighbour. was after lunch already and it was strange he was going home but oh well, I thought and kept on driving. I had a full afternoon in town plus an evening meeting.

It really helps to get where you're going if you turn the lights off in between stops. Which I didn't. So I sat in the library parking lot for a while waiting for a tow truck to come give me a boost. After I was going again I had to drive around town to get the battery charged up. My van starts to over heat when it idles too much on hot days so I had to drive it around town until it cooled off. That also meant if I wanted to eat supper, I had to buy it on the go.

I went to the Subway drive through where my favourite Subway employee works. I don't know if I've written about him before but he is a really nice young man from the Philippines. We made more than small talk one day last winter when he was sick and waiting for someone to come pick him up from work. He told me he couldn't afford a day off work because he worked to support family back home. One of our dollars is worth 45 of them in his homeland. Subway is the only fast food place I eat at and so I've chatted with him regularly for a year now. So yesterday I'm placing my order at the drive through speaker thingy and he's calling me m'am and telling me I'm ordering too fast. I slow down and wonder if the voice is his. I've never seen him anywhere except behind the front counter. I get to the window to pay and he's busy at the till so I know it's him before he knows it's me. He jumped a little and got a big smile on his face when he turned to take my money. What a pleasant young man. Yesterday I finally asked him his name and he smiled so proudly when he told me it was Roland. I told him about my van troubles and we chatted a little bit while we waited for the debit machine to spit out its receipts. I remember when I worked as a cashier and how nice it was to have repeat customers who chatted with me as I served them.

So eventually I get to my evening board meeting and it's mercifully short. My van thankfully is done its shenanigans for the day and I make it home safely. And my neighbour? He was flying home because there had been a cougar ten feet from their doorstep. A frantic phone call from his wife was what had him taking that corner so fast. The cougar was standing in the same spot their 3 year old daughter had been playing in not 10 minutes earlier. We'd heard through the grape vine that there were 2 cougars let loose by fish and wildlife officers a few miles cross country from us. I guess they made their way through the bush to our neck of the woods. Our neighbour's wife has the same hate of guns that I do but yesterday she was wishing she knew how to use one.

When dearest one talked to our neighbour last night he said not only were there cougars around but they'd seen a mama bear with three cubs in that field of oats that I walk past every day, too. I guess I won't be going for a walk any time soon. As I was typing all this dearest one and youngest son left for town. They were back within a few minutes to tell me there was a dead bear cub in the ditch right outside our driveway. Which means the bears were in the bush at the edge of the lawn. The bush that I can turn my head and look at as I type. Some days as I write I hear crashing in that bush and know something big is in there. Bears are usually harmless unless you get between them and their cubs. Problem is you don't know you're in between them until after the fact. Something tells me there's a grieving mama bear out there right close this morning. Poor thing.

Youngest son gave me a short lesson on using a rifle this morning. I think I'm finally going to give in and learn how to use one. I am no match for either cougar or bear. I'm feeling a little jumpy this morning. Something just made a short piercing noise in the bush. The gates on both ends of the deck are shut. I was given orders not to let the energizer bunny out in the yard. The cougar in our neighbour's yard was in the middle of stalking their dog when he was spotted.

The energizer bunny is curled up beside me as I type. She's sleeping on a desk chair with wheels. The other day she jumped up on it only to have to roll across the floor. She was not impressed when I sat there and laughed at the sight. Today she wouldn't jump on it until I held it steady for her.

I hope you have a taking-corners-slow kind of day.


Jackie said...

Wow! That is just so crazy!
Glad everyone is ok!
I know your blog is anonymous, but I was wondering if you would post a picture of the end of your lane, so we could see the bush these bears like to play in? If your not comfortable with that I totally understand!

owenswain said...

May God bless Roland and all others doing jobs some of us wouldn't do. May his family at home be blessed. May your contact with Rolad bring witenss of the Christ in you. May I be as considerate of people as you are with Roalnd. ::thrive! O