Such a scene is to be seen anytime I’m doing Communion Calls such as last evening, or going anywhere throughout the forested mountains in this paradise which is my parish. Defensive driving techniques here have been all about edginess in knowing that there will be an accident unless you’re instantly ready to brake while avoiding. A good sense of situational awareness, actively looking for deer hidden by their camouflage and a bit of grass or mountain laurel.
While any typical jaunt will witness, say, a half-dozen small herds of a few deer to ten or twenty, not to mention elk and bear and boar and bobcats and lynx and mountain lions and panthers and cats and dogs and coyotes and red wolves and now gray wolves and box turtles and snapping turtles and snakes and ravens and turkeys and turkey buzzards and road pizza possums and road pizza woodchucks, even a beaver or two… well, none of them are much of a hazard. They are simply a joy. And having learned a bit of situational awareness for their sake and your own, one will get be trained up right quick for the real danger, which comes from other drivers “owning” the road, so that nobody belongs on the road but them. And they drive accordingly. Oh deer! And oh dear!
Appreciation of the fact that all of creation proclaims the glories of our good Creator makes one not overly situationally aware, so that one is worn out with hyperawareness, but instead has one in tune, as it were, a sintonia, a precision in being aware of one’s environment. I’m not quite getting across what’s happening… Let’s try again…
While I’m out and about on Communion calls, it is the very Creator of all things who is with me in the Most Blessed Sacrament. How humble He is to allow Himself to be dragged all over His own creation in Sassy the Subaru. And in seeing Jesus’ good creation I cannot but proclaim to Him that He did a good job of it, all befitting the needs of His Immaculate Mother in taking care of us who have adopted into the Holy Family. And as we bounce along a single-lane gravel mountain road with washouts here and fallen trees there, one is never so distracted as not being able to say: Look! A bald eagle! Be careful! A donkey!