One Sunday a few months ago, I was rushing around trying to get myself and all three kids ready for church. It’s a losing proposition every week because I am inevitably, notoriously late. This particular week was no different, as I hustled the kids up the hill to the car, ten minutes after we should have left already. We pulled out onto the highway from our driveway, but had to stop just a hundred yards into our journey because, improbably (and yet, considering my luck, it was completely probable), a flock of wild turkeys was in the middle of the road. Five turkeys with not a care in the world, meandering from lane to lane, taking up just enough of the road that I couldn’t get through. I tapped my horn in hopes that it would frighten them off to the side. Instead, it just encouraged them to gobble. May as well make the most of an opportunity. I rolled down the windows and beeped the horn again and we all laughed when the turkeys responded with a gobble-gobble. A few more beeps and a few more gobbles and finally, the turkeys moved enough that I could continue on our way to church. The kids thought this was the best excuse ever for being late.
We hadn’t seen much of the turkeys for awhile, but recently they’ve been out nearly every day. And they are bolder now! Instead of merely gobbling when cars honk at them, they actually flock to the front of the vehicle. Then, when you try slowly to roll past, one particularly indignant tom turkey runs up and pecks at the tires. It’s actually kind of hilarious.
This morning, I loaded up all three kids to take Rana to school. We were leaving just on time. Imagine our surprise when we got to the end of our driveway and saw three cars being held hostage by our poultry friends. The turkeys had managed to spread themselves out across the road in such a way that no one could get past either direction. I knew that honking would do no good, so I got out of the car to try and run them off. Another man had the same idea and got out, clapping and yelling at them, which did the trick. Well, long enough for two cars to get through before they ran back out into the middle of the road again, leaving me and a woman who had pulled over on the shoulder.
I inched my car forward and the big tom kept trying to attack my tires. I got out and went and talked to the lady on the side of the road. She was completely bemused and had no idea what to do. We laughed at the absurdity of the whole thing and I explained what Mr. Gren and I have learned about their behavior. She was nervous about hitting one, so I suggested she pull in behind me while I tried to clear a path. The kids were giggling every time the turkeys rushed our car, but eventually we were able to get through with the other lady following close behind. We made it to school with not a minute to spare and Rana was looking forward to sharing with her classmates the story of the wild turkeys that almost made us late.