Five Seconds

I took the long way home last night after work because the highway was at a standstill.   I actually prefer the long way because it’s a very scenic drive that winds along the Blue Mountain Range in Central Pennsylvania.  Because the road follows the mountains, there are many blind curves and hills so I try to be careful because you never know what may be just around the corner or over the next knob.

As I came around a corner last night, a fawn, still sporting its white spots, jumped out of the woods to run across the road.  I hit the brakes and slowed down, but the pickup truck, coming from the other direction, had no time to do so and hit the fawn head on.  The impact caused the fawn to fly through the air sideways before landing on the road and spinning in circles across the pavement, coming to a stop just in front of my Jeep.  As I swerved around its body, I saw two clumps of white fur floating down through the air towards the road.

Because of where I live I am used to seeing deer; they are everywhere and deer getting hit by vehicles is common.  I’ve been in a cars that have hit deer and I see dead deer along the roads daily.  But as I drove away from the dead fawn last night, I started to get tears in my eyes; the whole thing was so incredibly sad.  I couldn’t help but think of the fawn’s mother who probably witnessed the whole thing and my heart broke for her.  I’ve seen it many times, the doe crosses the road first; the fawn follows a short while later.  Had the mother waited a few more seconds to cross; or had the fawn gone a few seconds earlier or later, he would have made it.  Sometimes, five seconds can be the difference between life and death.

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via Daily Prompt: Witness

14 thoughts on “Five Seconds

  1. I often think about this – the element of chance. Conversely, how many children step out into the road without looking, and are lucky because an oncoming car is far enough away to stop…
    Once, years ago,I was travelling on a bus with a driver who was a friend of mine. As we drove round a corner, a pheasant flew into the windscreen and was killed. My friend was almost in tears, and still pretty shaky when we reached the bus station. A year or so later he was driving in a the place when a motorcyclist came racing round that same corner towards him on the wrong side of the road. There was nothing he could do. The motorcyclist was killed instantly. When I heard about it I remembered how traumatised he was by the death of the pheasant.
    The corner is called devil’s elbow…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m reading this later and hesitated to write because I didn’t want to remind you of it. But I felt so compelled because I am so aware of this small fraction of time that has the ability to change the scales so drastically. I can think of so many times that those 5 seconds made a HUGE difference in my life!
    I’m also very sorry you had to see that transpire in front of you…the way you described it I feel like I was there in the car with you! Take care Lorrie…have a good week 🌸

    Liked by 1 person

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