Since our family moved to Vermont from more urban environs, I’ve often thought — and sometimes said — “It’s wonderful to live in a place where our children can see a variety of wildlife in its natural habitat, where the animals around us aren’t limited to those that managed to survive having their environment paved over and built upon.”
I say this during the magical moments when my daughters are catching toads in our yard, or when they spot an owl in a tree across the street, or when a doe and her fawn run right in front of us. I find it harder to say when my husband is emptying the 857th mousetrap, or when I’m digging a deer tick out of my child’s back, or when the smell of close-range skunk drifts through the bedroom window at night.
You take the bad with the good.
Like the other day, when I entered my husband’s home office to put our one-year-old daughter down for a nap in the playpen where she’d been sleeping because we’d had weekend houseguests. The shades were pulled, the room dim, but out of the corner of my eye I saw something that made me think, “What a large moth!” As the thing reversed direction and came straight towards me, I thought, “That’s no moth, that’s a BAT!”