I was determined to arrive at work on time this morning after yesterday's flat tire fiasco.
I pulled out of my driveway at 8:03 a.m., drove a few feet down the road, and immediately noticed a dark-colored "lump" sitting in the middle of the opposite lane. I slowed down to see what the "lump" was, and almost got teary-eyed when I saw that it was a baby Hedwig. Hedwig = what I choose to call owls. Hedwig = the name of Harry Potter's owl.
I was on the verge of tears because this little Hedwig was adorably innocent. Just standing there, sleeping. Middle of the road. 8:04 a.m.
I was absolutely terrified when I saw a car coming toward the owl. I prayed to God that the driver wouldn't hit it. I waved and honked so the driver would slow down or swerve or something. But the driver didn't do anything--just drove in a perfectly straight line, which meant that no tire even came close to Hedwig's body. Phew. I watched Hedwig's little feathers react to the sudden rush of wind. Gosh . . . I wouldn't have been able to go to work if the owl got hit. I would have turned my car around and cried and cried and cried.
Since there were no more cars approaching from either direction, I quickly grabbed my camera out of my purse, jumped out of my car, and took a photo, which I am delighted to share with you:
So that's the little baby Hedwig. Cute, huh? I love his/her(?) ears. And look at that beak! Oh man. I want one. What a beautiful creature. So cute and mysterious.
The bad news was that it was 8:09 a.m. and I still needed to get to work on time. What do to? What to do? What to do? I honked my horn. Nothing. Should I find a stick in the woods and poke him? No. I didn't want to wake him.
I called my dad, who happened to be at home rather than work, thanks to an early morning hunting trip.
"Dad, there's an owl on the road," I said.
"Oh. I know. He's been there since early this morning."
"Can you please walk down here and escort him off the road? Please. I'm so worried. Please."
"Yeah. I have to pack my lunch first."
"No, Dad. Please. Sometimes people can be cruel . . ."
"Fine. I'll walk down now."
Here's the part that I feel kinda awful about. When I hung up the phone, I drove away. I wish with all my heart that I wouldn't have, that I would have just stayed with the little Hedwig until I knew that he was safe.
I called my dad back about five minutes later.
"Dad, did you get the owl off the road?" I asked.
I could feel my eyes start to swell with tears. I knew I would never forgive myself if something bad happened.
"Yeah. Took a shovel down and he flew into the woods."
"Are you sure? Do you promise me you did that?"
"I wouldn't lie to you," he said. "I gotta go. I gotta get to work."
"Okay. Thanks. See you later."
So that's the whole story. Apparently Hedwig is safe and sound somewhere in the woods. I'll probably never see him again, but I'm glad that we met (even though his eyes were closed the whole time). How lovely it is to be surprised and intrigued by nature, especially when you least expect it.
Happy sleeping and safe journeys to you, little buddy.
Fiction, poetry, and all that good stuff . . .