Several years ago I worked for the local power company! My official title was a "Field Service Rep" (FSR for short)! Sounds very professional, huh? 8*) In a nutshell, I was a Meter Reader! A very simple, physical job that actually paid pretty good! I would spend my days walking or driving through all kinds of neighborhoods! From trashy trailers to beautiful million-dollar homes and everything in between! I even climbed 20 story beach condos in a single bound ( ok ok, maybe I took the stairs or elevator 8*) Understand, FSR's are like the postman, rain or shine you're getting that power bill! Trust me, I dealt with overgrown bushes, bugs, spider webs, ants, bee hives, snakes and vicious dogs! Even chiuahuahas can be mean! I still have bad dreams! lol But nothing could have prepared me for what I'm going to share with you!
It was your typical hot summer day, alittle after lunchtime. I was on one of my regular routes reading a home in a middle-class neighborhood! I had less than a hundred homes left and I was ready to be done for the day, so I guess I just wasn't paying that close attention! The meter was located on the side of the home, I punched the reading into my handheld device, It took maybe 2 seconds! Finished, I walked quickly around the front of the house, when all of the sudden, I sensed something just wasn't right? Was it a Dog? I had checked all the signs, there were none! Yet, I still felt something was in my presence! Just a few feet away I noticed some rustling of leaves in the nearby bushes. At that point we locked eyes! Those dark cold beady eyes still send chills through my spine today! I didn't know what to do? I froze, unsure of my next move? Afterall I had NEVER encountered or received training for something like this! There was NO STANDARD PROTOCOL! As it raised from a crouching postion in the bushes, it must have reached a hieght of 6 feet! It was now at eyelevel! I PANICKED! Doing the last thing an FSR is taught to do!--------> I RAN!
YEP! My big plan, was to run! Get to the sidewalk, then to the next house! (I had another meter to read) and it would be dark soon! Now I know that seems like a simple enough plan, but if you've ever watched a scary movie, you know running from something that's chasing you, often has dire consequences! Running just angered him more, causing Him to pursue after me faster! In my attempt to keep an eye on Him as I made my getaway, I had failed to notice what was in my path! Every (FSR) knows the rule of "Eye's On Path"! It's day one training! How could I have forgotten?
The Homeowner had recently mowed, edging the lawn along the sidewalk, leaving a nice tripping hazzard! Wouldn't you know it, I caught the edge causing my tumble across the sidewalk and into the grass. When I rolled and popped up to my feet! Brushing the bur's off, I found myself again face to face with the thing that was now very annimated and extremely angered at me! It was once again a stalemate!
SO, would I learn from my recent mistakes? Go to a Plan B? Maybe try to reason with Him? Certainly, he would realize I meant him no harm and let me pass? Maybe I could be-friend it?
NOPE! I decided to stick with my original instinct!-------->RUN, and RUN FAST!
The side gate leading to the backyard of the neighbors house was my target! As I ran, It seemed like my feet didn't even touch the ground. Isn't it amazing how the desire for survival can motivate, getting the adrenaline flowing! As I closed the tall wooden gate, he was right on my heals. Thankfully I had been able to put a barrier in between the two of us! I was safe, at least for the moment. As I punched the meter's reading into my handheld device, I could barely focus! How could I with him pacing back and forth, snorting like an angry bull! As he continued to peer through the spaces in the wooden fence, I began to wonder how i was going to escape to the next house! Would he continue to follow me? Afterall, where we had first crossed paths, was not his home? I don't think? Certainly Someone wouldn't have something like that as a pet? Suddenly a fresh new obstacle entered my mind. I unfortunately was currently standing in the backyard of a home that did have a Dog! and a very LARGE ONE! Thankfully, for the moment, the Dog that usually roams this patch of grass hadn't noticed me! Maybe he was inside or around the otherside of the house, either way I didn't care! I had to act fast!
As I devised my next move, I heard a distant shout from someone on the otherside of the gate. As I peaked through the spaces in the wood, I noticed a local Gas company truck parked directly across the street! The Gas meterreader (my rival, I might add) had stopped to eat lunch and had been watching, laughing at my entire traumatic ordeal!
As I acknowleged him, the Gas guy asked a question with a chuckle: "Need some help?"
I embarassingly laughed and responded: "Yeah, this crazy thing won't let me out!"
The local Gas guy, an older gentleman, with obviously more experience! Replied: "Ok, I'm going to draw him towards me, distract him and when I do, Just Run and Don't look back!"
I agreed and waited as he drew the attention of this thing that had terrorized and hunted me for what seemed to be at least 300 seconds!!! When the signal from the Gas guy came, I made my move! Thanking the local Gas guy as I sprinted away into the distance and to safety! I never did see that Gas guy again and I often wonder whatever happened to Him? Did he trap the thing? Did he sacrifice himself for my freedom or did he manage to escape? I never saw him again, but I am forever gratefull God put that local Gas Guy in my path! That was a dark day in my meter reading career, but I survived! Thanks Local Gas Guy! Thanks for Standing in the Gap!
Disclaimer: Ok, Maybe, I might have embellished the story a tiny bit, a little more drama possibly but the overall story is true! It really did happen! Really! I can still see those beady eyes!!
Can you guess what it was I encountered?
It was a "Goose"!