• FMG

Of Wild Turkeys and Best Laid Plans

Updated: May 30, 2018

That one time I (Jenn) got hit by a wild turkey near Torrington, Wyoming.

Years ago a run-in with a Wild Turkey would have been an experience that would be enjoyable at first, then regrettable later. It would have come in the form of a small shot glass, and would have been followed by lots of cheers.

Then I “grew up” and put my wild turkey days behind me.  

Or so I thought. There would be a wild turkey reunion . . .

I had scheduled a pair of presentations, one in Laramie, Wyoming, and one in Torrington, Wyoming. My presentation is designed to show business owners how to create a plan to start an idea or move an existing business forward. It is all about planning, so when the unexpected happens you have an idea of where the happening puts you relative to your goal. With small business owners there are always challenges that arise that sway the business (losing an employee, losing a line of credit, bad month of sales).

I teach people how to adapt to the ever-changing environment where they are doing business. 

So there I was driving at 11 am on a Tuesday from Cheyenne to Torrington, WY. I had left plenty of drive time, so I was looking around and going the speed limit. I was passing a classic roadside bar. It had the dark wood paneling, the slanted red roof and a sign that said “Welcome Hunters” . . . it might have said “Welcome Bikers.”

As I am taking in this sight, I notice something that is not supposed to be there hauling ass toward the road. “What is that thing?” I am thinking as milliseconds click by. At first my brain thinks, “Ostrich.” This thing is fairly tall-seeming and covered in feathers. As I decide this is a wildly misplaced Ostrich, I also start to swerve away from it because hitting an Ostrich is bad. But this Ostrich is unconcerned by my oncoming vehicle, prompting me to yell, “No don’t do that!” In the next few milliseconds I realize it is a giant, wild turkey hell bent on mutual destruction (my car and his/her body). Then POW-POP, the sound of chaos. Also there were a lot of feathers.

The turkey did not make it. The front lights and wheel well on the passenger side of the car also did not make it. Two kindly gentlemen from Eastern Wyoming College were behind me and assured me there was nothing that could be done.

With a comfortable 45 minutes to spare, and a 20 minute drive to Torrington ahead of me, I called the insurance company, took a deep breath and pulled back onto the road to meet my destiny. One simply cannot cancel a presentation on planning and what to do when the unexpected happens because the unexpected happened.

Wild Turkey, until we meet again.

Originally published January 29, 2016.


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