Thursday, January 6, 2011

Reflections on a Squirrel in Winter

Often, in the morning, as I sit working, a squirrel comes to dig acorns right outside my window. Currently, in the snow, it is a sharp contrast - the grey squirrel against the bright white snow. She mostly finds her acorns near the edge of a giant yew that keeps most of the snow away from the ground but also putters under the bare tan branches of a nearby forsythia.

She seems very casual as she goes about her business, tail twitching and stopping occasionally to look around, making sure the cats are not around and closing in. It has been cold outside, especially when the wind has been blowing but that does not seem to bother her either. And she's getting plenty to eat - sleek coat, nice weight, bright eyes when she looks in at me.

She is the only recurring visitor. There are a few birds about but, I think, the danger from the cats, for them, is too great and they don't linger and rarely come to ground. The squirrels seem to relish taunting the cats, knowing exactly how close they can allow the felines to come and still escape up the huge oak. Of course, the cats also never tire of the game. It plays out at least once a week.