Night to remember

First Thanksgiving in US. Everyone were going crazy a week before the day over what to shop, when and where and which is the best option to buy - online or in store. Every detail was discussed and dissected and plans were framed like military attack operation. Teams were formed and stores were assigned to each of them. Everyone were asked to be on touch over phone and any surprise sudden deals were to be announced immediately. All credit cards were fully recharged and were prepared for a good night full of bashing. The day finally came and the whole day was spent lazing around waiting for the sun to set. It was the proverbial calm before storm. As the clock crept towards 6 PM everyone started pouring out of their houses onto their cars and within the next half hour the entire complex was empty. And even that turned out to be late. For shops that were set to open at midnight, the parking lots were already full by 7PM. Electronic appliances stores had queues stretching for miles. As usual like any person from India we were "marveling" at the discipline with which they were standing in queue, despite the chill weather. As the clock crept towards midnight the people in queue were becoming restless. Suddenly there was a shriek and all hell broke loose. Everyone were rushing towards the boxes under wraps and it was dog fight every where. Seems the best deals were restricted to only those pieces under the wraps and it was limited in numbers. It was creepy and funny at the same time. The games CD's and the play stations and Xboxes were the most sought after and were sold out within minutes. We started around 7PM and were Mall hopping till around 5AM in the morning. It was the sheer excitement and the thrill of seeing so much crowd going crazy over the deals, that kept us on feet. Even the food courts were full at so early in the morning. We sleep walked towards our vehicles and started back home. No wonder the theme for the day was "Shop till you drop". We were already dead tired and eyelids were growing in weight with each passing second.

Everyone were happily discussing the things they had bought and were wondering over the amount saved happily forgetting the amount spent!! Me and two more people started early as we were done with our shopping. There is a peculiar thing about the roads here. Absolutely no street lights. Whatever lights one could make use of would be only from the passing cars. We were cribbing about the very same thing when all of a sudden my friend spotted a deer. It was as huge as a cow. He slowed the car thinking that the deer would swerve away. But the opposite happened. For some strange reason the deer started rushing towards our car and before he could apply brakes it got banged and like movie hero who skids on bike it went screeching on the road. We didnt realise the impact of the hit and thought it might still have survived the hit and might walk away. But suddenly my friend noticed the bulge on the bonnet and wanted to check the damage. We pulled the car over to the right and went out. The car that was following us pulled ahead of us and the couple who were driving the car came out to check on us. When we inspected the car on the light then only we realised the impact of the hit. The entire front portion wore a crumpled look and it looked as if we had drove through a brick wall. The couple who had witnessed the accident thought we were injured and  were rushing to us. When they realised we were all safe, they were surprised and relieved. Surprised for the fact that, usually the deer hits of such impacts are fatal to both the parties it seems. The accident still hadnt fully sunk in. We saw the deer raise its head and all of a sudden a tractor trailer came rushing and it ran over the deer. The driver hardly seemed to notice it. Soon there was a motorcade of vehicles each either hitting and rolling over the now very dead deer or swerving with barely any control missing it. Each time there was a crunching sound we were close to throwing up. The legs were shaking so much and it was not just due to the bone chilling cold weather. The couple helped us to give details to the 911 people and my friend called the insurance people. Unlike what they show in movies it took a full 40 minutes for the police to come and they towed away the vehicle. By this time, the rest of our group also joined us and it took a further hour to get everything sorted out. While the police and the couple were cool about the entire incident and even joked that we can take the deer home and cook it, rest of us were shivering.

Whenever i used to read incidents of road accidents of students i used to think of brash kids unable to take control of their new found freedom. But after driving here only i realise how different it is. Night time driving is something that is unavoidable here and these kind of incidents/accidents are almost common place it seems. When i googled for insurance claims for deer hit cases, then only realised how lucky we were to survive the hit. In most of the cases, the deer gets smashed on the windscreen due to the high speed impact and in majority of the cases the passengers had suffered serious injuries and in some cases fatal. Every time i think about the incident i could hear the cracking sounds and screeching vehicles trying to avoid the deer. Badly shaken, yet it was an unforgettable learning experience. It taught us what we need to do in such situations and touch wood, there shouldnt be another incident like this to put our new found knowledge to use!!

Comments

Ramesh said…
Thank God you are all safe . Scary experience.

Take care Gilsu.
Asha said…
OMG! PAdikkarapovay bayama irukku. nightla aduvum highwayla... exactly the reason i hate going out after twilight hours that too in highway. Hope you are all composed now. Drive safely and stay safe.
gils said…
Actualla..vandi oatitu vantha friendku anniki thaan birthday. Insurance companyku fone pannapo they were surprised when he gave his dob and were feeling sad for him. It felt very bad. Aana evening when things got a bit normal, we were teasing him. ungaluku maan karate teriyuma nu ketutu udha vaangarathuku munnadi odivantom :D
gils said…
@asha:
veembukaaga late hours muzhichi irunthu vandi oattina enna aagumnu pattu terinjikitaachu..aana appovum it wasnt the drivers mistake..antha lusu maan (paavam :( ) car lighta paathutu thirumbi poagama odi vanthirichi :((
Aarti said…
Woah looks like you had quite an adventurous thanksgiving and thank god ur the ok...

SEri enna vangineenga neenga????
Aarti said…
Woah looks like you had quite an adventurous thanksgiving and thank god ur the ok...

SEri enna vangineenga neenga????
Avada Kedavra said…
oh my God! What an experience gils! We have had deer running in front of our car couple of times. Thankfully we were able to apply brake before it could bang our car.
gils said…
its a scary scary thing!!! be careful during night times..deer caught on spotlight is not a fun quote!!! very serious one

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