Life in the country is amazing and funny and crazy and sometimes scary and quite often just makes me go “what WAS that?” with a great deal of laughter.
The other day, Maverick, as is his norm in the morning, woke me up by jumping on the bed and stealing the little bear who sleeps with me every night. He carries it around and happily hides it somewhere so I have to search for it each night before bed, so he can steal it in the morning and hide it once again. Perhaps he thinks he’s saving it. He also jumps back on the bed and lately has begun to cuddle with me for a while before barking in my face that it’s time to get up.
We wander down to coffee and computer, and the big Bear who sleeps with me will normally be waiting with the TV on Andy Griffith (gag) and the newspaper spread out on the table. We are such old farts.
The other day, said Bear was not at the kitchen table, but standing on the porch. I pulled down the window in the screen door and questioned this departure from the routine. Maverick and I do not like departures from routine. He pointed to the front yard and said, “don’t let Maverick out.”
Lying on the lawn was a large, gray, unmoving critter. “Umm, what is that?” He told me it was a possum, that Maverick had sniffed out. It had been curled up in a corner on the porch. Bear got Maverick inside, where he promptly ran upstairs to get me – good boy! Bear got a rake and gently moved the possum from the porch to the lawn, but he said it was “acting funny,” and had growled and bared teeth at him.
I contacted a friend who knows about wild animals, and was told that was a defensive move and not to worry. Meanwhile, we need Mrs. Possum to leave the vicinity, please, so Maverick doesn’t make her a chew toy.
All avenues resulting in dead ends, we called the police. Two officers showed up. I have chosen to forgive the young one who stepped on one of my tulips when he jumped back in alarm when Mrs. Possum again bared teeth at him. They agreed that she was not acting right, and decided that the best course was to put her down.
I took Maverick to the basement to play ball, not wanting either of us to witness the execution, but not before asking if they were sure she didn’t have babies.
We played with the big ball awhile and when I heard no shots, I went back up to find out what was happening. Mrs. Possum had decided to roll over, revealing that she did, indeed, have babies in her pouch. Bear, when he saw this, said, “I won’t shoot her.” He told me later that no one had been able to load the gun, something he had done thousands of times before and yet could not manage that morning. Make of that what you will. 🙂
So Mrs. Possum was shooed into a trash can, and transported to the woods, where she was sent on her merry way. Babies intact, food and water sources available, we hope she stays and so do her babies. Possums are harmless but they eat ticks, and ticks are anything BUT harmless.
And so I smiled the rest of the day. A simple rescue of an innocent creature made me realize that in a time of fear and darkness, there is still good in this world.