Yesterday morning I opted for a bike ride instead of my usual morning walk. Gail was out of town and I was on my own. I went out to a local park that has a 7 mile loop through meadows and woods. My goal was to work on my pedaling and shifting, I’m not very efficient at either one and frankly I’m still a little leary of my clipless pedals and shoes so the practice on a safe and quiet trail is good for me.
I was essentially alone on the trail, one other biker, an inline skater and a photographer trying to catch the birds on the tall grasses. It was a beautiful morning with lots of animals moving around and I was really enjoying the ride. As I rode out of the sun and into the shade I suddenly was aware that the shape on the side of the trail was a big white tailed doe, just watching me approach. I had visions of colliding with her when she would decide to bolt so I slowed down and called good morning to try and get her to make her move. She waited until I was about 8 feet away, already unclipped and ready to stop, before she leaped across in front of me and dashed away into the trees.
Although deer are numerous in our area and we often see them on the property it is still a thrill to get so close to one and share that eye to eye contact for just a moment. I hope I never get to the point that these encounters fail to make me hold my breath and wonder at the beauty of life surrounding us.