'Jackrabbit' by Celia Jenkins

Croatia: our honeymoon. Good old Satnavs, thinking they know best. Just a few minutes away from our rented apartment, nearly there, we turned off from the main road and up a quiet track. Away from the glistening water, the road that looked like it would drop you into the ocean at any moment, it was deserted. Eerily so. No street lights, the sky inky and unforgiving. The track soon turned into a worn dirt path, pebbles scattering off in all directions. We worried about the rental car as the road got bumpier.

Up ahead, something bounded out onto the path. We slowed down when we saw what it was – a hare, racing along in front of us. He was huge, comically so – much bigger than a rabbit – and looked almost ethereal in the beam of the headlights. White tale flashing like a lightbulb. It was ludicrous, unreal – this giant hare continually hopping along before us. Minutes went by. He wouldn't get off the path. After the stress of getting lost on the winding road after a long day of travel, we burst out laughing at the weirdness of it. He stayed in our way for a ridiculously long time – we slowed down, sped up, stopped, beeped the horn... he just wouldn't go away. We thought we’d never reach our destination. Eventually, the hare swerved off the track and away through the bushes. Laughing hysterically, we sped up again.

Bang. As sudden as the unnerving pop of a balloon, we stopped laughing. Just as we started picking up pace, the hare must have tried to leap in front of us again, drawn to the light. We didn't run him over – he jumped into the side of the car, head first into the passenger door, in all likelihood. We looked back on the road but he wasn't there. Probably scampered back into the dry foliage, dizzy and confused. In silence, we continued down the terrible dirt path, cursing the Satnav the whole way until we finally reached the apartment.

The main road, the one that hugged the coastline, the one we should have travelled on, ran right to the front door. Thanks, Satnav.


Celia Jenkins is a freelance writer who specialises in short stories, poetry (haiku), stories for children and light-hearted romantic fiction. Hailing from the island of Guernsey, and spending over five years working in Asia (China and Japan), she is currently living in the UK but looking forward to her next adventure, whatever that may be.



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