I had just played Beaver Brook Campgound in Monmouth. It was 10:20 pm and I called Chad to say I was on my way home. It's a 45 minute jaunt to Clinton. At night you always have to be careful. There have been many scary nights driving home from gigs. Gigs where moose and deer jumped out in front, ice and snow made it impossible to get home and some nights where you just pull over to sleep for a few hours because you are just that tired.

Well, last night at 11:05 pm the scariest thing that could happen did.

I was 5 miles from home. I had just crossed the bridge going north on I-95 where exit 133 is. There's a lot of construction going on right now so you need to slow down and be extra careful. At night I'm always careful. I had set my cruise control back to 69 and was excited to be home in my bed that night early. Two miles later it happened.

That's when I saw them. Not one but TWO sets of legs. That's it. No eyes. No bodies. Just legs.  One set so much taller then the second. They were just standing there. I slammed on the brakes and braced myself.  I heard the screaming of the tires as they marked the highway. I braced myself with my eyes closed and felt it.  The air bag went off on my face and smoke filled the car. I didn't know that airbags were filled with a dust that makes you itchy like fiberglass insulation.  The car came to an immediate stop and the hazards came on automatically.

I had just killed my first animal.

The first 10 cars didn't stop. I was broke down in the passenger lane and could see over  the airbag the cars flying by. I undid my seatbelt and found my phone on the floor on the passenger side. I called 911 and the gentleman on the other end of the line said the police were on their way. Finally 3 vehicles stopped. One was a young couple where the boyfriend had just picked up his girlfriend in Portland who was coming home for the weekend from college in New York, Kaylee Hess and Alex Moreau. Another was a family from Bangor with little kids in the car, Lori and Sterling Ferrencough. And the other was a gentleman from Bangor, Frank Katch.  The other vehicles were flying by honking their horns not caring that 4 vehicles were all stopped with their hazards on.

I called Chad and he packed up the kids to come and get me. I couldn't stop shaking the shock was so bad. Turns out I had hit the moose "dead" center of my car and its' head hit the windshield.  Trooper John Lacoste was very nice. He had taken a course to become a game warden so he knew how to tell the age of it. It was a 700 pound, 3 year old cow.  The male had walked off into the woods, probably wondering where she was. Had I hit the bull, I would have been dead.

My neighbor across the street, Carroll, came and got the moose. He and Chad gutted it last night and this morning we are taking it to Chad's cousins, Tiffany and Ryan. They own Hemlock Ridge Game Procesing in New Sharon.

Thank goodness for the kindness of strangers. Everyone PLEASE wear your seatbelt.  And please be careful driving at night.