Wednesday, December 20, 2017

When Blitzen Moves In

This year, my blog posts seem to be about whatever is top of mind on that given day.  Today is no exception.  You see, we have lived in our house for almost 19 years.  And all day today while I worked in our home office, five does sat in my yard – twenty-five feet from my house. 

When we first moved in, we had a beagle.  Although we have just over half an acre of wooded land, we fenced in a small perimeter around the house for the dog.  The dog lived for the first ten years of us being in the house.  During that time, we never saw any deer.  Hawks, raccoons, fox, and skunks yes, but no deer.  So now we have been without the dog for approximately nine years.  And, in the last five years, the deer have moved in.   We usually see 3-4 does walking around with the most we have ever seen being nine.  On top of that, we now also see one buck (at least I think it is only one buck – it is hard to know since they never travel together).  He came by today as well.

Over the years, the deer have gotten increasingly bold.  This past summer, they even came to the more-exposed front of the house.  I will admit a few years back when we had soooo much snow and the poor things were struggling to walk chest-high in the snow on the steep hillside, I did put some food out there for them.  But only that one time.  Now, they will come as close as ten feet from the house to munch on whatever suits them – even sitting on the hillside and watching me cook through the kitchen window. 

I don’t mind all of this and in fact, I quite like it.  It is only “my” land where any humans are concerned.  Animals don’t play by human laws and documents.  Which brings me to my next point: I don’t think they are living on my land; I think I am living on their land.  They are here all the time, without fear, eating and resting and relieving themselves.

Nonetheless, I have trouble dealing with one aspect of our co-habitation, their recent discoveries - my hostas and mums. I spend a great deal of money on landscaping so I don’t appreciate everything being eaten to within an inch of its life.  And yes, I know you can spray the plants with that awfully smelling spray but that is just not worth the stink. 

Herein lies my dilemma: how peacefully to live amongst the woodland creatures creating a perfect balance where I respect their rights yet still protect mine. Kind of a metaphor for life, don’t you think?

-- Eve