The rain was pouring (shocker, it’s Portland). But then the force and heaviness of the drops hit even harder, making me flinch as it pelted my sunroof. I cursed my windshield wipers to catch up; this was their time to shine. On my drive downtown, first, I must a cross through Terwilliger Boulevard, bobbing and weaving through the sideline of trees hugging both sides of the road. They shake their branches overhead, forming an arch over the road, taunting all drivers with the dangers of the forest.
The car in front of me was slow. (They’re always slow because they probably learned to drive in Portland…) Slowby turned off and the open road lay ahead. The splash of warnings hitting the windshield was not enough to make me need for reduced speed. Swooping in and out, I hugged the curves and pushed for more.
But then a young deer sauntered in front of my car. Apparently it was her time to enter this part of the story, center stage.
In the middle of a busy and crazy world and a hectic day, the deer taunted me to slow down. But I needed to be downtown for a 12 PM meeting.
She walked off to the side of the road and a car in the opposing direction stopped as well. I swear we smiled at each other and turned back to watch the deer. The rain didn’t seem to hit her. I kind of wanted to see for myself how pillowy soft her untouched fur was in that moment.
The car and I were afraid to move. The deer walked off to the side and kept her one eye on me. She wasn’t sure about me. And I’m wasn’t so sure about her either. So we froze. Silence. And the chaos was still.
She walked away with a theatrically slow step, and I started a soft roll forward. She took a step back toward me so I immediately slowed to a stop. And again our eyes met.
With a quick jerk, she was gone. Her work was done there. Without looking back, she started slotting, running off perpendicularly into the forest.
I like her style.
It sure is beautiful for those few precious minutes, even when you’re forced to slow down.