Seldom do I ever feel like I'm blindsided by an evolving event or a surprise development.
But a couple of weeks ago, I was minding my own business, sitting at the front of City Hall, jotting down a few notes as the monthly Greencastle Park Board meeting seemed lost in a litany of Brickmania events, 5K run requests and fundraiser ideas.
Then a local resident building a new house in Deer Field Estates stepped to the podium and sent chills down my spine.
He spoke of moving some dirt around on his building site along the south side of Shadowlawn. On a shaded hilly lot just west of where the People Pathway crosses the road.
While the footers for his house were being dug, he wanted permission to cut down the hillside where it slopes to meet the pathway. As he spoke, my head throbbed and a dull ache overtook my shoulder.
Park officials talked of walking that property. Checking it out and seeing no problem with the plan.
But they don't know that ground like I know it. Believe me, I've been up close and personal with that site. I know all too well how that lot smells and tastes and feels. Driving past it for more than two years has been nothing short of unnerving.
After all, it's where I went headfirst into the turf after shooting a photo of a nice old guy cutting wood. Saved from a concussion or worse only by thrusting out my left arm to bear the brunt of a January 2013 fall that has essentially changed my life.
That momentary lapse in judgment -- trying to step around muddy tire tracks to keep my shoes clean -- ended with me tearing my rotator cuff and shredding my left bicep muscle. Oh, the humanity.
And that Park Board chatter the other night was forcing me to relive that nightmare all over again.
Back at the podium, the kind gentleman who owns the lot was even pledging to put in 180 feet of sidewalk across the front of the property where it meets the pathway.
A nice gesture, albeit two years too late for me.
All the while he stood at that City Hall lectern, I felt compelled to reach out to him and advise him "save yourself, that lot is haunted."
But I bit my tongue, ever the observer and not a part of the story.
Then I drove past earlier this week and construction equipment was everywhere. A rock base had been put down for the driveway. The mountain of dirt had been reduced to a molehill. It seemed so innocent now.
I slowed to gawk. Wind whistled through the trees. To my fragile state of mind, it came off as shrill, mocking laughter.
Yep. That lot is out to get me.
Consider yourselves warned ...