Sunday, December 17, 2023

Me and 95 South

Traffic in my lane was moving slowly. I didn’t know why but I wasn’t inclined to pass. I was on I 95 South and the exit for 175 wasn’t all that far away. It wasn’t until the car directly in front of me got off at the Glen Burnie exit that the cause was revealed.

It was a car pulling some kind of wooden boat on wheels. In the boat was an enormous octopus sculpture with black tentacles hanging out over the edges and a huge blue head. The car pulling the boat had a hammerhead shark on top and possibly mounted weapons (like spear guns?) facing forwards on the hood. 

I just stared and gripped the wheel, wishing I could take a photograph. As I moved further right, to exit at 175, I took a farewell look at whatever this strange vehicle might be. Wow. You know those creepy movies where the kids get lost at an old amusement park? It was like that. 

Being the sort of person that I am, once I got home I immediately went to social media to see if anyone else had reported this thing. Of course not. I was alone: just me and my unlikely highway octopus vision. I did receive several suggestions that it might be a boat destined for an illuminated holiday display. I could be wrong but I don’t think so. Those boats look cheery. This one looked almost malevolent.

Finally my post in the Howard County MD Facebook group produced the response I had been waiting for:

I saw the same thing pulled over on the entrance ramp to Route 70 in Marriottsville yesterday morning. We saw it so quickly and everyone in the car saw a different detail. It was so bizarre. They also had a large yellow sign with a black shark that looked like a road sign next to this car/boat. I had no idea what to think.

I can’t explain the relief I felt in not being alone with this vision. That octopus is not something you’d like to be left alone with in your imagination. Trust me. In an amusement park or roadside display it would be unremarkable. Directly in front on my car on I 95, traveling at around 45 miles per hour? Let’s just say it stood out from its surroundings.

This is probably as close as I will ever come to feeling like people who have seen UFO’s and just want to be believed and validated by those around them. It has been suggested by a few friends that I ought to have a dash cam for just such experiences. It would certainly satisfy the “pics or it didn’t happen” crowd. But getting one now would just be silly. 

Seeing an octopus on the highway was a one in a million life experience. Buying a dash cam now would be like closing the barn door after the horse has bolted. It’s never going to happen again. 

Please tell me it’s never going to happen again.

Have you ever seen anything startling or unusual while driving? Let me know.

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