Going to my parent’s place on Long Island is always an adventure. I never quite know what I will find. A number of years ago we found a turtle in the pool which we kept as a pet. In recent years we’ve had visits by frogs that have been the delight of my dog Foxy’s day. She enjoys trying to bite them just as they hop away.
A few weeks ago, I walked in and said hello and walked to the back yard to see how our garden was growing. I looked up into the tree nearby and saw something that looked like a nest. I told my husband about it and as we looked closer, we realized it wasn’t a nest at all. There was a sleeping raccoon propped in the tree in broad daylight. My husband and I didn’t really care one way or another about the visitor. However when we told my dad, he said we should kill it.
He even told my husband to turn to an informercial channel and see if they don’t sell a rifle that he could use to kill it. My husband relayed this advice to me and I just giggled. A little later on my father told my mom about the raccoon perched in the tree. My mom’s solution to getting rid of the raccoon was to shoot it.
Despite how much they argue, they still agree on some things. Later on in the day, a particularly touching moment, my husband and I caught both my parents sitting outside in the backyard talking. No yelling, just talking. As we eavesdropped we came to understand what was happening, they were concocting plans on how to get the raccoon out of the tree.
As the sun was setting, I was reading out in the backyard. I caught the raccoon climb down from the tree and walk along the periphery of the house to wherever it was planning to spend the night. I told my husband what I had witnessed.
The next morning, just after everyone had had their coffee, we went to check if the raccoon had returned. Nope, our neighborhood pest had decided to hot foot it out of the hostile environment. My mom and dad both muttered something under their breath. What my husband and I had heard as something to the effect of ‘we should have shot it when we had the chance.’