Sunday, August 3, 2014

the squirrels

The squirrels around here are quite squirrely. (and if you look at the word squirrel enough times, it looks squirrely, too) The chipmunks are a little spastic, moving very quickly and not letting you get too close, but the squirrels are a lot bolder (and dumber?) and are not very afraid of humans. Any time people sit outside they run the risk of squirrel invasion. I must admit I enjoy watching to see how close the squirrels can get to people before they get chased away. I saw one make it all the way to getting its paws on the edge of the coffee cup before the owner of the coffee noticed and shooed it away. That's probably not very nice of me, but it is fun. I had a squirrel jump up on my foot the other day when I was sitting outside with one leg crossed in front of me. I wasn't really paying attention, and my foot was just hanging there in the air, when all of a sudden there was extra weight on it and I look down and see a squirrel on it, looking up at me. It sat for a few seconds, then crawled up my leg onto my knee, but when I spoke to it it turned and ran back down and jumped off and ran away. The next day I was sitting on the steps in front of the Hotel talking to someone who was sitting next to me when all of a sudden I felt something land on my upper back. The person sitting next to me said 'don't move, there's a squirrel on your back'. I started laughing, and the squirrel crawled around a bit, sniffed my ear, climbed partway onto my head, and then jumped off again and ran away.
They also will chew into anything left outside that has food in it, and I encountered one sticking halfway out of a bag on the loading dock one day. I said something to it, but it ignored me and kept doing what it was doing (it couldn't see me, after all, and possibly couldn't hear me either, with it's head in the bag), so I poked it, and it jumped out of the bag and looked up at me like 'what did you do that for?' Then, of course, it tried crawling around the other side of the bag, like I wasn't going to notice, so I took the bag inside away from the squirrel.
There are little squirrels out now, though, and they are also cute. I know they're just rats with furry tails, but they are sneaky, pretty smart, and just cute little things, even if they are a mess. Life would not be as interesting around here without them.

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