Ripples’ Raccoon!

We had a visitor last night!

I was working on the computer yesterday evening around 10:00 when I looked up and noticed a brief flash of what appeared to be raccoon.  Now, I dismissed this nighttime vision, since I had just started reading Sterling North’s Raccoons are the Brightest People after reading and loving Rascal and So Dear to My Heart (both by the same author).  The book is filled with delightful images of raccoons, so I assumed there was no raccoon outside – just the big gray cat named Romeo.  I had also noticed that wildlife was not so abundant as I’d thought, seeing mostly the same kinds of birds as I had seen near Dickson Street at our old apartment, and not catching sight of deer, fox, rabbit, turtle, skunk, raccoon, or anything else in our yard yet – just tracks in the backyard woods.

Raccoon?! Yeah, sure. When pigs fly, I thought.

But curiosity grabbed me, and I eagerly looked outside, as I often do, craning my neck to see something natural, alive, wild and free.  A huge gray boulder lumbered towards the patio table, where I had left some bird seed on a plate.  Reaching up on its hind legs, it put its cute little snout and masked face up on the table.  Instead of pulling itself up, it hung upside down by all four paws from the edge, little claws scraping the plastic as it paused, and looked at me upside-down like a ‘possum.  Then it got on top of the table and began chowing down on the birdseed, clearly enjoying itself.

Ryan & I watched our new raccoon friend for about 30 minutes.  It was the most magical thing that’s happened since we moved in.  To celebrate the moment, I’d like to share some raccoon facts from National Geographic with you! Also enjoy this YouTube video which fairly accurately captures what our raccoon looked like before it hung upside down and looked at me:

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xn2XX1nIyYs&w=560&h=315]

 



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