Mr. Squirrelah has just returned to his Momma and Poppa's tree, after his tree was downed by an ice storm. Let's see how he adjusts!
Mr. Squirrelah is hugging his Momma when we left our story. He is welcomed home to find he has 3 new siblings, two girls and a boy. Some squirrel nests have several small rooms, one for the babies and one for the grown-up squirrels. There was a tiny bit of room for Mr. Squirrelah. His sisters and brother were just old enough to start leaving the safety of the nest, and Mr. Squirrelah helped his Momma watch over them so they wouldn't go too far from home. (Poppa squirrels don't usually live in the same nest with the babies.) They started by going up and down the closest branch, then down the trunk, and finally after several days, down to the grass.
He was happy to learn that Macho, the American Bull Terrier, had moved away, along with the beautiful daughter of the people in the house. Poppa said he still came to visit now and then, but wasn't there all of the time. Macho scared Mr. Squirrelah; that is why he moved away from home in the first place.
Once again, he started looking in the door of the house, and the people started putting a peanut out for him every day. They were very happy to see him again. Life was good, just like when he was a young squirrel. He didn't care much for his Momma telling him what to do, but it was nice to be back home. Yes, he stayed up later than she would have liked, and she wanted him to build his own nest as grown up squirrels should, but he thought there was always time for that!
One day, Macho came to visit the people in the house. Mr. Squirrelah was watching the babies because his Momma had asked him to help. He was sitting in the sun, and to tell the truth, he wasn't paying close attention. He didn't hear Macho come out of the house. As Macho raced across the yard toward the baby squirrels, Mr. Squirrelah (without thinking of himself for once) saved the day by running in between Macho and the babies, giving them time to get to the safety of the tree. But Macho had him cornered, caught like a baseball player in a run down between 2nd and 3rd base. He ran left, he ran right, and left again, but Macho caught him! Mr. Squirrelah was so afraid! He just knew he was a goner. He held still, barely breathing. His heart raced so fast he was dizzy. Macho was very gentle with him, holding him carefully in his mouth. The beautiful daughter came running from the house, and gave Macho the hand signal to drop what he was holding (Macho knows American Sign Language). Macho put Mr. Squirrelah down, but he was afraid to move. When the beautiful daughter took Macho in the house, Mr. Squirrelah ran for the tree. Everyone was so relieved that he was safe. They were all tchrring (talking squirrel talk), creating quite a racket, calling him a hero. Mr. Squirrelah had grown into a responsible adult squirrel just like that!
Meanwhile, in the house, Macho was being scolded for chasing and catching squirrels. He was sent to the corner for a time out. He was very sad and sorry.
The next day, the beautiful daughter brought Macho outside, and they sat quietly in the grass. She was holding peanuts. Well now, do you remember that Mr. Squirrelah would do just about anything for peanuts? He crept down the tree, and bit by bit, staying low in the grass, he crawled like a soldier to the beautiful daughter. She gave the signal for STAY to Macho, and he didn't move despite Mr. Squirrelah being so close. I'm not sure who was shaking harder, Macho or Mr. Squirrelah. The peanut was placed right in front of Macho's paws. They sniffed each other until Mr. Squirrelah couldn't stand it any longer. He grabbed the peanut and ran! Over and over, he came down for a peanut. He learned he didn't have to be afraid anymore.
So Mr. Squirrelah, the babies and Macho learned to share the yard. They played chase, but Macho wouldn't grab any of the squirrels ever again. He didn't want to go to doggy jail.
Thanks to my sister, Carolyn Lochmann, for all of the pictures except the first, which is from Dreamstime.com. This is based on a true story.
About Cathy M Wallace
I'm rediscovering the joy of being in the garden, playing in the compost, remembering gardens from my childhood and dreaming of those to come. Physical challenges are helping me learn all about raised beds, lasagna gardening and new tools. In addition to our yard, my husband and I take care of several gardens at church. We love our family, friends, travel, writing & laughing.