I do not know what has happened to me since we moved on this place. I used to be so disciplined. A work-oriented person, I set out each day with a “to-do” list and I stuck to it. If something interrupted Plan A, say, a mechanical breakdown, I had Plan B, C and D for backup. I can’t remember how or when I started getting side-tracked from plans and projects but, somewhere along the way, dawdling set in. I hate to admit it, but now I see the projects before me that need to be done and I think, “Oh, it’s kind of cold out there today, I’ll just wait for the sun”. The sun shows up and I make it as far as stepping outside, but get waylaid at the deer pen. From there, I manage to talk myself out of the work I was supposed to get done and I tell myself it will be fine to do it tomorrow. I tell myself I deserve to relax and have a ME day.
It happened again this morning. I clearly needed to get the house spiffed up and prepare the guest rooms for holiday company that will soon arrive. I had laundry to do. Holiday cooking and baking has been put off for two days now. It has to get done today. Really.
Once FD was off to work this morning, I did my deer chores. I cut up apples and head out to the deer pen to feed Daisy and Holly their morning snack. I checked the water and filled their feed buckets with deer pellets. Always spending time with Daisy, I attempted to pet her while she nibbled on my hat, licked my jeans, tugged on my coat zipper and yanked on my pony tail. Having had enough of her antics, I decided to fill the bird feeder across the way. Our recent cold snap had the birds frequenting the feeder. That accomplished, I swept off the front porch, then headed inside.
Back in the house, I lumped the first of three loads of laundry in the washer. I filled the kitchen sink with water and cleaned up the breakfast dishes. Then, into the living room with the vacuum in tow, I hooked everything up. But, glancing out of the front window, I caught sight of the crow family perched on Daisy and Holly’s fence. What the heck were they doing? One of the crows flew down and stalked around in the oats. I assumed they were on their way towards the chicken yard next door to the deer pen. I’ve seen the trio raid the chicken scratch before! They didn’t seem to be making any trouble at the moment, however, so I fired up the vacuum and blazed away.
I was working my way towards the front windows in the living room when I saw Junior (the juvenile crow) and one of the parents IN the deer feed buckets helping themselves to deer pellets! Holly and Daisy were lying right next to the bowls, chewing their cud, and evidently didn’t mind the crow family stealing their food! Not even bothering with a coat, I ran out of the front door, arms flailing, screaming, “Yaaaaaaah!!! YAAAAAAH!!! Get outta THERE!!!” Daisy and Holly jumped up and ran to the back of the pen, surely wondering just what madness had inflicted that lady. The crow family flew up and over the fence and landed on the driveway. I ran towards them again but they only flew a short distance. They weren’t going to give up on a free meal that easily.
I was cold by now, and retreated indoors. I decided I would just keep an eye on the crows and dash back out if I needed to. I continued vacuuming, moving from room to room, only shutting down long enough to check on the first load of laundry. Strange. I thought I heard noise of some sort from outside. I went to the back door and looked to the west, but nothing appeared to be wrong. I did note, however, the sound of crows cawing incessantly seemed to be coming from the north.
I ran through the house to the front porch and, looking out to the north, noticed the Red-tailed hawk who I generally see in the wooded part of our property to the southwest. The crow family had incorporated the help of their extended family, and now a group of 15 or more crows gathered, all screeching at the hawk. Some crows were flying at the hawk and others were setting themselves up near the hawk. The noise was outstanding! The Red-tailed hawk was likely perched near the songbird feeder, in hopes of snagging an easy breakfast morsel. This often happens when we feed the birds in the winter months. I frequently see a Cooper’s hawk and the Red-tailed hawk lurking in the shadows, waiting for a poor, unfortunate song bird to happen along to the feeder. One time I witnessed such a kill. It was disturbing and, despite my interference, the hawk simply flew off with its prey, leaving a few dislodged, red feathers discarded on the grass. One of my cardinal friends had become a meal.
Before I could think about getting the camera, the hawk’s expanse of wing opened wide and off he flew, into the canyon with the shrieking, black birds chasing him into the distance. It was comical in a way. One would think the hawk, a large predatory bird, could stand his own. I suppose a mob of hecklers will drive anyone away, to escape the ridicule. After all, who can hunt effectively with all of that attention?
I turned to go back inside and, dadburnit, there they were again!!! The clever crow family had taken advantage of the hawk diversion. There they were, thieving deer pellets from the buckets… again, right in front of Daisy and Holly, who had nestled back down in the grass, chewing away… on their cud. I stepped off of the front porch thinking about going after them again. As I approached, they flew to the top of the fence. They weren’t leaving. I was cold. How many pellets could they eat anyway? Was it worth disrupting Daisy and Holly to scare off three crows? Nah, I’ve got things to do in the house!
So now, I sit here writing. The vacuum is still on the floor awaiting an operator. The washer has finished a load and two more await. FD will be home for lunch any minute. Oh my goodness… Ms. Fox just raced past the window!! Where IS my camera?!… Gotta GO!