Monday, March 24, 2014


woodcut by Thomas Pennant, 1726-1798

I drive a lot (a LOT) for work, and one of the things I notice about the seasons changing is the difference in wildlife that I see on my travels.  In fall, it's all kinds of deer, small mammals like porcupines with the occasional coyote.  In winter, it's some deer, crows, and the occasional pheasant.  In spring, one of the first harbingers of changing times is the reappearance of squirrels.  Gray ones, red ones, the occasional coal black ones.  They are back in droves, racing around the verges and swarming up trees as I pass.  I'm sure they are trying to find their stash of last fall's nuts, still buried under the thick snow.  But they are back, which means it is spring, even if the weather and temperatures aren't cooperating.

I must say, I'm much more pleased about the reappearance of squirrels than I am about the reappearance of skunks.  I nearly hit one the other evening driving home from work.  Could you imagine the stench if he had sprayed the car?  Sheesh.  Everybody would have known when I arrived at work, from a mile away!

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