Living full time in the country now for over a year and a half has taught me a great many things. And, I’m learning I have a great many things yet to learn. Last week the lesson was, don’t pick anything up unless you have fully identified it.
Case and point: I don’t typically allow the dog, Cadbury, or the cat, BabyCat, outside after dark. “You both are too domesticated and would be a yummy snack for the night critters,” I tell them. But, one evening last week BabyCat stayed out way past the time the street lights came on. When I finally found him it took some coaxing with his favorite cat snacks to get him to come inside. When he finally did come in the house, Cadbury needed to go out. I figured she’d take care of her potty business and be right back in. Nope, she too felt it quite ‘fun’ to hang outside for a bit. When she did at last return to the kitchen door she was unusually frisky and extra drooly. I spun around in my wheelchair and told her she was a good dog. She didn’t follow; instead she just stood there drooling, her tail wagging so hard her entire chunky Cadbury body vibrated with its power. “Come on, I’ll get ya a snack,” I said as I wheeled into the pantry to get one. Sure enough the word ‘snack’ got her to move.
When I went back into the kitchen I noticed a dark lump of something on the floor. “Hum,” I thought to myself, “what is that.” I wheeled up to it, bent over and was just about ready to pick it up when I noticed ‘it’ had a tail and tiny round hears, and ‘its’ eyes were popping out of ‘its’ little head probably due to ‘its’ very broken neck. Oh my yes, ‘it’ was a dead mouse, a very soggy dead mouse. And there was Cadbury, the dog, so very proud of her gift to me. I think I actually read her doggie mind, “See, you don’t need no stinkin’ cat, I’m a great mouser.”
“You’re right, Cad, I’ll have to have a talk with the cat,” I replied as I gave her another biscuit.
Yes, lesson learned, don’t pick ‘it’ up unless you’ve identified it. Identification made a roll of paper towels and bleach clean up, “Whew,”I said to myself, “I am getting country-fied”
When I got back to the bedroom, I did have a chat with the cat. Only to find he could care less about the event. In fact, he decided to turn his back on me, stretch his cat body out, lay his head on the pillow, and go to sleep. I actually think I read his cat mind, “Let the stinkin’ dog get the mice, I’m the one sleeping on your pillow.”
I bet you’re thinking my talk didn’t get to BabyCat, huh. Well, Monday, again, don’t pick ‘it’ up unless you identify it. It was early afternoon and time to exchange the pets. (Because Cadbury wants to eat BabyCat, I have to keep them separate, so they take turns playing outside) BabyCat was outside, Cad needed to go, so I was calling and calling for BabyCat to get him in. Finally, I saw is fluffy cat tail coming up the hill outside the kitchen. He was coming up backwards at an unusually slow pace. As I got closer, I noticed he was dragging something up the hill. Oh my hell, a snake, as long as BabyCat. Not a dead snake, no, but a very unhappy, live snake.
BabyCat continued, even against my verbal wishes, to drag the snake; thank goodness he was dragging it by its tail, if snakes have a tail; to my wheelchair before he released it. Oh, what a proud cat he was. He high stepped around my wheelchair with his purrer turned up. I actually think I read his mind again, “Let’s see if the stinkin’ dog can match this.” And then he majestically plopped down next to his live gift.
The snake was a bit dazed and confused as well as I. “Now what do you do,” I thought. I was quite relieved it wasn’t a mountain rattler but ‘it’ was a snake all the same. As I went to get the shovel, the snake saw its opportunity to haul snake ass and made its way back down the hill.
Yesterday, again, the snake was back up on the porch with a proud BabyCat lying next to it. “Really, not again,” I said to myself as I went to get the shovel. This day the snake wasn’t moving much. I sat there, shovel in hand, starring at it. I just couldn’t do it; I couldn’t chop its head off. It kept looking at me with its freaky forked snake tongue flitting in and out. Finally, I scooped ‘it’ up in the shovel and flung it back down the hill. I let out a sigh of relief for the moment, because I know BabyCat will probably drag ‘it’ back up the hill as sure as I am that Cadbury will probably catch another mouse.
Nope, I’m not liking these country mice and snakes but, yep, Cadbury, BabyCat, and I are getting country-fied.
This is BabyCat after yesterdays ‘live catch’. I actually think I read his cat mind once again, “Mmmhumm, nothing like a juicy watermelon after a snake pull.”
How many cats like watermelon? How many cats drag snakes up a hill?
And here’s Cadbury, in one of her favorite porch places. I think I actually read her mind once again, “Whatever!”
And here’s the unhappy snake, who, I’m sure, will be making another visit.
All in all, I love living in the country, with all its wacky lessons to learn, it is a wondrous place to be.