S h o r t   F i c t i o n  /  E s s a y s




Evidently someone left the back door open last night, and at 2 or 3 in the morning---whenever Steve came home--he found a family of five raccoons chowing down in the kitchen. They ran, of course, but left behind a muddy mess in and around the water bowl, where they'd decided to wash their paws (and some of the cat crunchies.) Which isn't that much of a big deal, really. I'm more concerned about how quickly the last bag of cat food has been used up.

And then there's the situations outside. I'd turned off the fountain, as I do every night now since raccoons seem more inclined to leave it alone if it's not running. But this time they'd insisted on pulling up the pump from between the rocks, removing the foam filter that surrounds it, chewing on it and, evidently not finding it to their liking, discarding it behind the willow tree.

The also took my frog! This is a six-inch ceramic ball with a small frog on top that sits beside the fountain. I've done some preliminary scouting but haven't seen it anywhere in the yard so far. Where would a raccoon take a ceramic yard decoration? And perhaps more to the point, why???

In addition, there was the matter of the nice big nectarine with one telltale bite in it taken from my kitchen table but discarded outside the back door... and the shade garden fountain, which had also seen its share of bathing activity and needed to be drained and cleaned. Which I did. Still in my nightgown.

I have no objection to wildlife in general, or even to the occasional kitchen visitor. But incidents like this make me lament, 'Why can't they just be like Scruffy?"  The tiny orphaned possum comes in every night, slips quietly into the pantry, munches and goes again, leaving nary a hair out of place.

But raccoons will be raccoons, I guess.

Oh, well. August is prime raccoon season, but it's half over (a fact I can barely process, by the way; the whole summer seems to have whizzed by) and soon they'll be gone.

I hope.

In the meantime there will be a strict closed-door campaign. Oh, and I want my ceramic frog back.


Essay index     |     Site index     |    

site design © bardsmaid 2005  |  Hosting by NinePlanets