Mates! It is Joey the motorhome again. I know it was just a short while ago that I was yabbering about our new temporary home here in the bush in Mahomet, Illinois. I told you that we were in the middle of the woods, and that there seemed to be a lot of bities (you know, bugs that’ll bite ya) about. What I didn’t know, and I and my owners have just found out, is that we are in an area that apparently has more wildlife than you can shake a didgeridoo at – maybe even more than Australia, if you’re counting species.
Now, I’m used to ‘roos, wombats, dingos, and koala bears, among other animals that live in the outback, but I never thought I would be here in the heartland of America and see such things as I’ve seen. There is a red fox and two babies that live around here and have
been seen on numerous occasions, and I’ll bet that there is more than one of his kind out there. He has a great bushy tail and that pointy little nose that’s so cute. There are also deer, skunks, possums, groundhogs, squirrels, and of course frogs and turtles. But the scariest encounter we all have had has been with the deadly raccoon.
I hear you laughing – how can such a cute little creature with that mask-like face be scary? I think there’s a reason for the mask, but that’s another story – here’s what happened. Jim and Robin had been keeping their garbage outside in a heavy plastic bin with a tight-fitting lid for convenience. One morning last week they woke up to find the bin had been invaded and the garbage – what was left of it – was all over the pad and the surrounding yard – made me look bad, and I was spewin’ mad, mate.
Simple solution – keep the garbage in the back of the van – but we couldn’t help but wonder what exactly had done the deed. The next evening, Hannah was taking Jim and Robin for a walk in the forest. As they were coming up a hill and into view of me and the concrete pad I’m sitting on, they saw a critter the size of a small bear run away from me and into the woods. They recognized the awful thing as a raccoon – you can’t mistake the ringed tail and the pointy ears, not to mention the distinctive shuffling walk.
We figured that our garbage thief was probably the same racoon, but the next day we had an even bigger shock. Early in the morning, Jim looked outside and noticed that Hannah’s new big bag of dog food was lying out on the pad, torn open. He went to investigate, and found the gaucho compartment door open, and some other items out on the pad as well. The food bag – a 20 pounder – had been dragged out of the storage gaucho, ripped open, and half-eaten. Not only does that take a big animal, but that coon is bound to get bigger eating like that.
Needless to say, the dog food has been put in a bin and safely stowed behind a closed gaucho door. But we all feel violated, like our personal space has been invaded by a verminous creature – which is exactly what has happened! Crikey, I’m glad they don’t have crocs around here!
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