Tuesday, August 09, 2011

A fox is the most excellent of company

Rule 1 of blogging - if you write it, someone you know will read it. Rule 2 of blogging - do not reveal the location of your hermitage. Your niece reads your blog, your son talks to his cousin. I have been discovered.

Despite no longer being quite so mysterious (and no one has tipped off the littlest niece and nephew yet), the lath house remains a secure refuge against the burbling chaos (though another fifteen people are due in on Wednesday evening, so who knows how long this will hold).

I'm not alone for all that the people don't seek me out. The lizards scurry under the floorboards (at least I hope they are lizards and not rattlesnakes) and bask on the pile of old wooden beams. The owl that perches on the pine tree has gone to bed for the day, but left a pellet at my doorstep so I can see how very good a hunter he is. The birds fly through the open rafters to serenade me.

Late yesterday morning, I heard what sounded like my dad's dog plunging through the brush. Imagine my surprise when I spy, not the chocolate brown arc of a labrador's tail, but a bushy red tail with a white underside waving in the weeds. It's a fox, come to curl up in the shade under the bush on the other side of my porch - eight feet away. (I'm under the ferociously thorned rose bush on the other side, which is less inviting for napping amongst its branches.)

We are agreed to ignore each other, at least until I bend over to pick up a book and startled my companion from her slumbers. She bounced (rather literally) out of her hiding spot and in a blink was at the far side of the pasture. I reached behind me to pick up my camera, and when I turned around she was gone.

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