Just a thought… A wounded deer leaps the highest. [Emily Dickinson]
Welcome to these final days of June. What a treat it is to share summer with you!
It’s funny, having mentioned Bambi here last Friday, that today’s journal is a glorious look out the window, in words (and pictures). Deer, one in bad shape, bunnies and, instead of skunks, of which we have none, a few captivating raccoons have filled the last few days with adventure and appreciation.
As I’ve told you, our move to the Victoria area (we’re in North Saanich, overlooking Victoria International Airport) was, in part, to help us to heal. Little could I have imagined how taken I’d be, not just with the scenery and the way it envelops you in peace and perspective, but in the little dramas that play out in our own backyard. I’d be lying if I said I’m not drawn to our expansive windows about 20 times a day, just to see if “our” deer are here. You’ll see them in a moment.
Yesterday I learned that our raccoons look much different from those enormous brown, black and beige trash pandas that inhabit Toronto and environs: ours are small, grey and white, with accents of black (their masks) and a much more timid demeanor than their urban cousins down east. Interestingly, BC raccoons are said not to carry rabies, unlike their kin. I plan not to test that bit of information personally.
After hearing a squealing and rustle in the bushes, I tiptoed out onto a deck and stood still enough to witness a pair of bandits sneaking across the width of our yard to have a nice meal of two corn cobs we’d tossed below for whatever critter wanted them. (This photo – not of our raccoons – is from the Delta Optimist.)
I shouldn’t go outside when I hear squealing; it can’t be a good thing. Has the tiny rabbit we see nibbling grass come to harm? Is a quail family being picked off by the neighbourhood cats again? I keep reminding myself that nature isn’t cruel, it’s just indifferent and, well, natural, but I can’t help myself from worrying about the more vulnerable inhabitants of our tiny corner of the world.
Take this fellow. I’ve watched him enough to see little budding antlers and I wonder if he’ll have a chance to live long enough for them to grow fully. You see, his back left leg is lame.
For well over a month now, when he makes his way through our yard, sometimes stopping to rest in a quiet corner, that leg is lifted and never is serious pressure put upon it. Was he attacked, I wonder, hit by a car traveling too quickly through our neighbourhood, or hurt while jumping a fence or rock wall? I can’t say. I do know that we cannot call any agencies for help for him unless he’s dead. And that’s life, too. I have a little video of him if you’d like to watch. He looks mangy and thin and I wonder what will become of him….
And finally, one of the nicest natural surprises we’ve had here: a pair of fawns. They and their momma came by for a visit last week and it made our day. Now you know why I’m always taking the long way to the kitchen: there’s a show right below us and I don’t want to miss a moment – even when they’re en route to our neighbour’s yard!
Have a lovely week and I’ll be back here with you tomorrow.