Saturday, September 24, 2011

The Owl

The other night I was driving home after dark and when I was going through a sort of sketchy part of town I noticed some miscreants, as there usually are, up ahead crossing the street. I knew I was safe in my big car with doors locked and everything, but I was annoyed because the two men seemed to be walking as slowly as they possibly could across the street--the middle of the street, no crosswalk in sight. Jaywalking always irritates me, because my number one fear when driving is that I'm going to run over a person, but this made me even madder, because they seemed to be walking slowly on purpose, just to taunt traffic. By the time they got into my lane, I was feet away from them, and hoped they'd hurry on at the thought of impending death, but no. They ignored me and actually stopped in my lane, stood there and started talking to each other. My car came to halt, my hand hit the horn, and for a few split seconds I gave them the evil eye, then swerved around them to continue on my way. I suppose the three cars behind me had to do the same thing. And with incredulous anger, I ranted to myself about how annoying and stupid those men were.

 Almost home, I drove through a quiet neighborhood with street-lamps lit. Recent rain made the streets and trees glitter. Suddenly a large and spectacular owl swooped down from the shadows of an oak tree and attempted to land on a power line. It wobbled as it grasped the line, and beat it's massive, silent wings. Then it turned it's mysterious face towards me. All anger forgot, I was suddenly in a world of awe, contemplating the wonders of nature at night.

 C told me, "See? If those men in the road hadn't slowed you down, you might have missed seeing that owl. Isn't it funny how life works out sometimes?"

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