« on: July 15, 2006, 10:23:46 PM »
So last night I'm sitting in the computer room and I think I hear a noise out back. I look, and there's nothing (that I can see, anyway). This is not uncommon.
A bit later I hear more noise, definitely sounds like it's in my back yard. I don't bother to look.
Then, a while later, I hear a big clatter, as of things falling, and it sounds like it's either right out back, or worse yet, in my house. I also think I hear Mrs. Magoo calling me. I look out into the hall, and nothing. She's still asleep, the house quiet.
I decide to check downstairs anyway. Down I creep, and at the bottom of the stairs I grab a board that Mrs. Magoo had been cutting some scrollwork from, which shall now be known as The Persuader.
In the dark, I head through the dining room to the kitchen, and when I'm almost there I hear a clatter that tells me there is no doubt whatsoever that there is an intruder in my house. My board poised to provide free dental work, I flipped on the light and confronted the intruder.
There, on top of my stove was a (did you guess from the thread title?) big old raccoon. S/he must have come in through an open window above our downstairs stairwell that has been without a screen since we moved in. The raccoon was looking for a means of egress, while my cat, Ernest, stood on the floor. Suddenly the raccoon jumped down, darted toward me and Ernest, made tracks for the dining room, and by the time I'd flicked on that light to follow, had gracefully jumped up on the same windowledge s/he'd come in by, and crawled out onto the wire fence (which explained how it made it in; as the window is above a stairwell, we always figured it was safe to leave open, but the fence is close enough for a wily critter to leap over, I guess).
I shut the window, then inspected Ernest for damage. He was mysteriously missing a tuft of fur on his hindquarter, but I patted him all over with a piece of paper towel to look for blood, and there was none (whew! Not gonna do a remake of the ending of Old Yeller!). He was pretty razzed by it all, I think, but it definitely occurred to me that he had come out the winner. After all, it was the raccoon that was "treed" on my stove, looking for a way out, and not him. Ernest could have hid under the couch, or run up- or downstairs, or made himself scarce in a dozen ways, but he didn't. Needless to say, he got the hero treatment. He's only about 17 pounds these days, and the raccoon must have been 25, but Ernest is nothing if not blustery and mean looking, and he can make battle noises that recall a bagpipe coming over the next hill, so I guess the raccoon decided it just wasn't worth it and made like a banana and split.
Cats friggin' rock. :D