Sarah Roush

Sarah Roush

It’s that magical time of year. You know, the time when the sun goes down shortly after lunch and visibility is sketchy at evening drive time. There are more people driving with white knuckles this time of year than any other as everyone is still adjusting to navigating in the dark.

At the risk of sounding rude, drivers around here are nuts. That is on a good day. Toss an early sunset into the mix with any sort of precipitation, as you weave through ever-changing traffic patterns due to the never-ending road (de)construction, and I feel like I have accomplished something by just arriving home.

But wait — there is more. In addition to the time change, we are dead center in rut season for deer. For the uninitiated, rut, is when breeding season begins. It goes in waves, based on different cycles for the deer. Field and Stream Magazine has noted the “best days to be in the field during rut” are Nov. 20, Nov. 26 and Dec. 4.

They note this because deer will be more active at that time looking for love; like it’s last call at a singles’ bar. In addition to strutting, snorting, sniffing, rubbing trees, and other “manly” deer activity, there will be chases. Literally. Does, who may not be interested in a specific stud, or may be skittish for one reason or another, will run, and bucks will follow.

They don’t pay a whole lot of attention to anything else since the does are focusing on fleeing and the bucks are focusing on their escaping love connection. It can make an interesting drive even more exciting.

Yesterday morning, my friend from Chicago, who had just bought his dream car, a 1981 gold Camaro, made this discovery as he was taking his first-ever road trip — to Tennessee. The trip was to show off the car to his brother who had one just like it in the 80’s — and had refused to ever let his “grimy little brother” ride in it.

“A “huge beast” careened out of nowhere and just plowed into my car”, was what his Facebook page said. The sleek front of his sleek little sports car now sported a snub nose and a permanent sneer where his front bumper was. He doesn’t realize it, but his dream car will probably be totaled.

I had to laugh though when others asked about the deer. He said three different people stopped, asked if he was okay (which he thought was amazing) and then inquired if they could have the carcass. He was aghast, and told the first two “no”, the third, after also being refused, was a bit more enterprising and asked my friend if he needed a shovel to bury it.

Thinking that in addition to everything else, he was going to have to dig a hole for a creature he was now comparing to a camel, he reversed his stance and conceded he would be willing to give the guy the deer since he was going to be nice enough to take care of such a grisly task for an absolute stranger. While this now “good Samaritan” hauled off his freezer full venison to process, my friend quickly became the target of major ridicule, even as we all commiserated with him over his car.

As he mourned the loss of his dream car, we all informed him he was lucky he didn’t have broken parts as well, he was advised to go get checked out for whiplash and the goose egg sized bump, which was sprouting in the middle of his forehead. He received offers of rides, a place to stay overnight, suggestions for repair shops, another friend offered to give him a replacement car; a Ford Pinto “that probably won’t catch on fire.” Others sent him links for recipes for venison.

All in all, it was a tough day for my friend and the deer. But, as he said; “it wasn’t my fault, because the crosswalk for deer was about a half mile back.”

Just be careful, my friends, because obviously, the deer are not obeying traffic signs.

Written and submitted by Sarah Roush for The Circleville Herald. The views of this column may not necessarily reflect that of the newspaper.

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