Larry: How was your camping trip?
Vickie: It was awesome! Except for the bear.
Larry: The bear?!
Vickie: Yeah, we went out for a night hike, and when we returned, there was a bear in our campsite going through our food. We forgot to put everything away.
Larry: What did you do?
Vickie: When I first saw it, I stopped dead in my tracks; I was terrified. But then Christina suggested that we should try to scare it away. So we got in her car and turned it on. We honked the horn, revved the engine, and we yelled and clapped, and that scared it away.
Meaning: The expression "to stop dead in one's tracks" means to suddenly stop moving, usually when frightened. In the above example, Vickie says she "stopped dead in (her) tracks" when she saw a bear. The expression comes from hunting and can also be used in the more literal meaning.
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