Wednesday, October 29, 2008

road trips, monsterous birds and blogapalooza

Today is blogapalooza! (Or Pumpkin Fest, as I’m calling it, because of the pumpkins at the top of our posts). Angela Nickerson set up this wonderful blog tour and her story today is really frightening! Theme: What a Strange Trip It's Been. All the participating blogs have strange or scary travel stories today (links to all the participating blogs are on the right hand side of Angela’s blog).

Prizes! If you comment on Angela’s blog today, you might win a prize!

Here’s my scary-strange travel story:

I’m originally from Minnesota, where there’s lots of wildlife, like deer, moose, bears, squirrels, raccoons, wolves, and cows, lots and lots of cows. I’ve seen all of them except a moose or a wolf, but I’ve seen bison crossing the road in Yellowstone, which is basically the same thing (not really, but bison are BIG). So I’ve seen large animals before …

In college, a friend and I drove to New Mexico for job interviews. We went, we interviewed, we swam in the hotel pool in our clothes (because we forgot our swimsuits), and then we drove back home, which is when things got weird.

On the way back, we took turns driving. My friend was sleeping and I was driving, somewhere in New Mexico or West Texas, where there are long stretches of highway and no other cars. A large shadow passed over the car. I thought it was the shadow of a plane or a cloud passing over the sun or something, but no. A second later, a huge, and I mean HUGE bird dropped from the sky and landed on the highway right in front of the car. I slammed on the brakes, and stopped just short of the bird, and screamed or cursed (probably both) which woke my friend up.

We both stared at this monstrosity as it spread it’s mega wide wings (much wider than the car). I thought I was hallucinating, but it was in the middle of the day, and my friend saw it too. Maybe we were both hallucinating. This thing looked positively prehistoric, but with feathers. I knew that it wanted to eat us for lunch, from the way it tried to hypnotize us with all its wing flapping, and stared at us to see how fat we were. Eventually it decided not to try to eat us, or it realized we weren’t going to get out of the car, or decided it couldn’t eat the car and it flew away. I didn’t know they made birds that big, neither did my friend.

I vowed to never tell anyone, because they wouldn’t believe me, but that vow didn’t last long. The first person I told was completely un-phased and said, “oh, that was probably just a vulture.”

What do you mean it was “probably just a vulture??” You didn’t see how HUGE that thing was. Are you sure that’s what vultures look like?? It totally didn’t look like the pictures I’ve seen, or the cartoons, plus I thought they were smaller! This thing was like a pterodactyl!

The moral is, if you’ve never seen it before and it’s huge and menacing, anything can be scary, even a cow.

When there are news reports of people freaking out over a cow that got loose in the city, I can totally see how they’d be frightened if they’d never seen a cow before (but I still think it’s funny that they’re scared of a cow). I’d take a cow over a vulture any day, but that’s just me. Vultures are freaking scary! And nothing should have a wingspan that wide, unless it’s a pterodactyl.

p.s. My friend got the job and I didn’t, which I have always been grateful for. That bird looked like a stalker.

p.p.s. I looked up some info today, and from the pictures, it could have been a condor or a black vulture. I can’t remember the face well enough to be sure.

p.p.p.s. Even Sheila is afraid of vultures, especially zombie vultures. Can you imagine?