Yesterday's Adventure - Beware(This article was originally published on March 2, 2012 on the old blog )
Yesterday, I was reminded of an OSHA saying:
Is better to lose one minute in life… than to lose life in a minute.I can be pretty naive at times I suppose. Part of that can be attributed to my belief that there is good in every person somewhere. But, where good is, evil is also present.
I found a couple of parks that I had never been to before and decided on a destination for the day. The park I chose was highly recommended by hikers on several websites. Mountain bikers gave high marks and praised the upkeep, cleanliness, and safety. Fishermen posted on wildlife sites about the beauty & bounty of fish at the park online as well. The park was listed on several family recreation recommendation sites also. I just had to go see this hidden local gem :-)
I have been all over my town, city, county and several others by myself exploring. I never gave the safety of this particular park a second thought, especially after so many high regards listed on public sites by so many people!
Following GPS, I located the park. I parked & noticed how many cars were present. There were many. I left my car, locked it & went to a beautiful fishing dock :-) The water was low, but it was lovely :-) The surrounding trees, shrubs, and spring flowers were beginning to emerge. Life around the dock was thriving. It was absolutely beautiful!
As I walked along the first & only part of a trail I got to see, I soon realized I was surrounded by 5 men. They were coming toward me from all angles. They spoke one at a time to perhaps make me nervous. Nervous people do stupid things. I heard several of them all at once in my mind though as I quickly evaluated my predicament.
One whistled a cat call.Hey Baby.
Take some good pictures?
Whatcha got there?
One unbuttoned his pants. I had a knife clipped to my blue jeans (as I usually do) but it was dull :-( (I can't find my good knife that has made so many hikes with me.) I hadn't planned on taking a long hike so I didn't bring my regular gear with me.Where are you going sweet thang?
Come here, we just want to talk.
I quickly evaluated my surroundings:
- I was surrounded by 5 angles.
- Wooded area.
- No large rocks, branches, random wrought iron, wire on the ground, or strong vines to use for defense. There was nothing to use as an element of surprise.
- No one else around. I realized how stupid I had been.
Please bear in mind that my friend could not hear me well. Signal was not strong and he could only understand a few words that I was saying. Thank God he didn't hang up on me!!OH Hey Sweetie!! You are? I just found the coolest park. Yeah, it's off XXX highway. Really? you're coming this way anyway? Great!! I can't wait to see you sweetie!! You're just 2-3 minutes away, really? Oh man, I would LOVE to show it to you! I love you!
While on the line with him, I had twisted off the trail, into the thicket and toward the lake. Two men didn't follow. One man behind me from another direction proclaimed,Fishing? YES, there's a dock here and we can fish sometime. Oh, did I tell you that I heard back from the doctor? I HAVE CRABS. So, you'll be here in a few seconds? Great!!
With only two men left following me, I swiftly waded through the water with the phone plastered to my face. I'd rather take a snake bite than face what they may have done to me! I dared not to repeat myself and give away the fact that my reception was not the best. I kept saying to my friend at different times in different ways,She crazy! She going into that snake water. Forget that man.
When I reached my escape trail, I glanced behind me. I had lost the other two men back on the other side of the lake. Their fear of the snakes was enough to deter them. I got in my car and sped out of there! I took a valuable lesson with me: Is better to lose one minute in life… than to lose life in a minute.Stay with me. Stay with me.
Thank you OSHA :-)