Why that ATV unleashed in me a genetic wellspring of motor vehicle recklessness I cannot say for sure. Whipping through tree-covered trails in the SW Va. Blue Ridge Mountains is thrilling, to say the least. I expected that. But it can also get a little scary. Expected that too.
What I did not expect, however, was for thrill to dwarf fear such that fear seemed to not exist at all. I’m not sure I ever really felt that before – or it had certainly been quite a while (wedding day and honeymoon come to mind :). Diving off those towers in college was scary as shit. The buzz was more relief for me than thrill. Though I never got hurt, even 19 year old me knew enough to be anxious while pondering that water a few stories below. I can say I did it, but after about 3 times I was ready to cash out with whatever chips I still had.
And yet, after about 10 minutes on that atv, 37 year old me wanted desperately to go faster. Sure it was dangerous but….Squirrel!!
Which is to say ADD was not a problem while on this vehicle because everything was interesting and crucial at all times. A constant squirrel-chase, if you will.
Out of the woods, we came around a small bend into a wide straightaway. Hammer time! By the time I passed Chris I was up to about 45mph. I knew the turn was coming very soon so I accelerated to put enough distance between myself and Chris so as not to cut him off. I think it was right about this time I realized this turn was not going to turn out as I had hoped. So I squeezed and stood on any and all brakes – and skidded right over the side (Dust. Taillights. Dust).
I managed to stay on the vehicle for two bounces before a mutual break up. I say mutual because I did get dumped, but the moment I suspected this vehicle no longer wanted me I committed whole heartedly to our separation.
I landed pretty much in a somersault and could hear that big scary bitch back there somewhere. So I just kept myself rolling, crawling, scurrying. Something hit or landed on my left calf, hard, then I heard the motor in my other ear as it settled into one spot and continued idling.
Leg? There. Has feeling. Blood? No blood. Stand? Yup. That really just happen? Guess so. Think this means the ride is over? I sure hope not!