I’m enjoying my second round of teaching my kids how to drive a car. My son Michael now has his driver’s permit and so I’ve been driving around town with him in order to help him grow as a safe driver. You never know what kind of experience awaits you around the corner. The other day we were just doing our think driving around our neighborhood in the foothills near the DeLaveaga Golf Course. The road was clear, Michael was doing great – when suddenly there was a bang. It felt like the under-carriage of our car hit a boulder but that’s not what we hit. As I looked out my passenger window I saw a young deer roll out from under the car on my side, rise to its feet like a staggered prize-fighter, and then stumble off up a steep slope. Being the advanced driver that I am (wink, wink) I immediately grabbed the driving wheel of our stopped car, and with a loud voice said, “Okay Michael let’s go!” Michael, being smart enough to know that tapping the gas with the driving wheel pointed in the direction I was aiming our car would steer our car down a steep embankment and into a house. So Michael wisely didn’t move the car, and this made me say more loudly, “Michael let’s go!” Finally Michael said, “Uh Dad if you let go of the wheel I will move the car.” Man, I am smart!
So I finally let go of the driving wheel and we both drove a little ways down the road, and pulled over. We hopped out of the car and started shaking out all the adrenaline running through our bodies and then we looked at the front of the car. The car was surprisingly okay except for a missing license plate which I walked back to retrieve.
It wasn’t fun to hit a deer but you know what happened? Immediately after our adrenaline rush wore off, Michael and I began laughing hysterically at our amazing experience together. And when we got home he couldn’t wait to post the news on his Instagram and Facebook accounts. It reminded me again that bad events I really don’t want to have often turn into memorable, funny stories that I really enjoy re-telling.