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My neighbors: a tale of a fox and a rabbit

I have fine neighbors. But perhaps the finest of them all is the Fox who dens by the creek behind my backyard. I spotted him by the lake, dutifully watching the Canadian Geese and their babies swimming by. I swear I saw him lick his lips. He strolls on the streets in broad daylight. Some days he rubs his back on the grassy area across from my house. Then he scratches behind his ear, trots away, and scurries his thin body through my neighbor's fence. I've tried to snap a picture but the few times I’ve bumped into him, we've just stared at each other, like two old acquaintances who have a lot to say but can’t find the right words.

Another fine neighbor just moved to my front yard. A brown rabbit who jumps as high as if she was launching herself into space. As you might imagine, the unexpected guest has created somewhat of an issue, especially at nighttime. I try not to take sides as no one likes a meddling neighbor, but I’ve been wondering if I should write some by-laws for the creatures living on my property. Something like: “It’s strictly forbidden to eat your neighbors”. But, I do want the Fox to feel at liberty to eat some other kind of nasty rodents, so in that case maybe a better language could be: “It’s strictly forbidden to eat your CUTE neighbors.” Hopefully, that’ll be enough to spare the rabbit, and invite other night creatures to take a good look in the mirror and decide if they are a good fit for the neighborhood.

But, this isn’t the only quarrel I worry about. Don’t get me started on the Hawk and the Squirrel who perform a chasing dance (or is it a dancing chase?) every morning in the curly branches of the old tree right across my front door. If my kids are often late to school, it’s not really my fault. We can’t stop ourselves from gawking at the bickering neighbors and placing bids. The Hawk always side-eyes me, but she doesn’t know I enjoy her dance of persistence. I wish I could be like her, going boldly after the pesky squirrels that plague my life.

Anyway, my neighbors are fine, but I wonder what they think of me. One day I should invite them for tea and cookies. In that case, I shall make a sign that reads: “Eat only what is ON YOUR PLATE!”

If that ever happens, I’ll be sure to keep you posted.

(c) 2022 Mariana Llanos

Video provided by one of my fine human neighbors, Jennifer Madison. Thanks!


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