It was a strange Sunday morning and it just kept getting weirder. As we walked into the supermarket some guy was backing out of a space and his car was making a horrendous grinding noise. The long-suffering wife and I turned to see if he was dragging an old lady or something and saw a flood of white liquid cascading out from underneath the car. Now I know my car fluids, having seen enough of them on the floor of my garage from sick autos and none of them are white. As the guy drove away nonchalant we saw the crushed plastic gallon of milk that he had hit and run. I guess I would have run too.
We entered the store with no idea what awaited us.
Thomas’s market on the Memorial highway is in a strip mall and is one of our smaller supermarkets. It used to be an ACME when my son was a bag boy. That son is 32 now. Whew! Time flies when you are having fun. Anyway, that section of Shavertown is real busy, with a Burger King and McDonalds nearby, a gas station, several car dealers and lots of homes. Urban sprawl, Northeast Pa. style. The highway is busy with traffic even on a Sunday morning.
Our mission was to pick up the Sunday Papers and a few other small items and get out of there. As we were nearly ready to check out I heard the announcement over the p.a. It was no trick to hear the panic in the girl’s voice as she said “Bill to the Checkouts ASAP!” I was close enough to hear her tell Bill the problem. It seems a deer had somehow made its way into the store. Sure enough a young doe, according to an eyewitness I overheard later, had navigated the highway and the parking lot and ended up at the automatic door. When it stepped on the activator pad the door swung open and the deer ran inside.
I saw the poor unfortunate critter at the end of the dairy aisle. It was having a real hard time on the shiny linoleum floor, its hooves being designed for the woods and not grocery shopping. It was flying around like Bambi on the ice for the first time. It would have been funny except that it wasn’t. The meat manager, Bill and two stock boys were trying not to get a face full of sharp black hooves and were herding the doomed deer back into the stock room.
As we left I heard the same girl on the phone trying to get the Game commission.
The jokes would be very easy to write. But it’s no joke, this event. I know it ended badly for the lost deer. And I know as we take more and more of the woods where Bambi should live and make them into grocery stores and fast food joints that this sort of outcome is going to occur more often. Soon it will be as common as road kill.