I was accosted by two overgrown raccoons last night. Here’s how it went down:
I was out on the patio, enjoying my new Adirondack chair, the slight chill and chatter of the waning bits of autumn’s first wind and rain storm. I remember feeling safe and peaceful out there. I missed being able to see the stars, but it was nice to hear the rain still coming down. And I was thankful for the protecting arms of a Japanese maple and some overgrown bamboo that kept me nice and dry.
I remember seeing something walk past me. Smaller than a young person, too large to be a cat, too round to be a dog. I remember wondering what it was but not caring too much. I remember how slowly it passed–just two feet away from me. I remember thinking that maybe it was a cat that had eaten another cat. (Strange how those brief flashes of cognizance remain in our brains after we experience trauma.)
I remember seeing another one. I remember thinking it was attached to the first. I remember screaming. I remember how no one came to my rescue.
I remember how the raccoon turned around, looked me dead in the eye and hissed at me. I remember being offended. I remember trying to figure out how to make it go away, trying to figure out how to get back into my house without it biting into my bare feet. I had to decide whether I should throw my hard cider bottle at it. In an effort to avoid the Kim-scream, raccoon growl, glass breaking trilogy of late night noises, I flicked the bottle, sprayed the poor animal with half of my cider. (I’m sorry, Mr. Raccoon. I was frightened.)
It all happened so quickly. I was shaking, thinking how I could never survive in the wild, never even in the countryside. I could have used a hug. I could have used a dog.
Now, Dear Reader, I don’t want you to think that I need a dog to beat up those mean ol’ raccoons for me. I don’t even want a dog to scare them away. But I do think it’d be a nice idea to have a dog to cuddle up next to, to talk to about those fuzzy buggers, and to make me feel safe and warm after such an encounter.