I rode my bike into the shop today and got some great relief from some painfully stiff muscles. Lucky for me, when I got in, my super duper awesome boss Hollywood sent me on my way to get another good hour in before the rain came.
Me and Hansen took off down W River Road towards Ft Snelling, enjoying the mild temps and cool mist in the air. The path was littered with crimson and buttercup leaves and we awed at a huge bald eagle that passed over us on his fishing trip along the river.
At Ft Snelling, Hansen kept on his way and I turned back to get to the shop before the light drizzle got any heavier. I pedaled along the bike path, basking in the peace of my ride and my ability to even get out mid morning for a ride.
Suddenly, to my utter horror, I saw a squirrel bolt at me last moment, headed straight for the small space between my wheels and there was no way for me to stop. I felt a small impact and a weight on my left foot as I screamed bloody murder on the peaceful trail.
..oh my, I killed it... just an innocent animal... stop the bike!....ehhh, it's wrapped around my foot....kick it off! kick it off!....
Trying to grab my brakes and slow myself down was hard to do as I tried to unclip my left foot and kick it off as small "eeekks" came from the trauma below me. It finally gave and I pulled off the trail, looking back at the still figure on the path.
A jogger was next to the animal, looking from it to me as I approached, and fear began to drown me in my place.
...what if it's not dead.... I don't know how to kill it.... there's no way I could... would they hate me if I just left it....
But then, suddenly, it sprang to its feet and ran off into the trees. WHAT THE F&%#???? The jogger looked back at me asking if I was okay... he must have seen the confusion in my eyes... I guess I never hit it..
As I neared the squirrel, he jumped on to my foot at the last second when he must have seen he wasn't gonna make it. I didn't notice because I was too afraid to look down, envisioning blood and gore all over my bike. His squeaks were probably shouts of fear or maybe saying "weeeeee" on the new carnival ride he'd found. Then, when I kicked off what I thought was dead meat, he slammed onto the ground and took a few seconds to steady himself before making his brake.
Thank God he didn't bite me, but there was definitely a little scratch from his little claws as he enjoyed the ride... something to tell me it really happened when I got back to the shop. With eyes blazing and my heart rate through the roof, I retold the tale to Jay and Crossmax, absolutely in disbelief of what had just gone on.
I'm still in shock...Darn squirrels.
Happily in one piece,