A leap of fate
Saturday January 21st 2012, 12:50 am
Filed under: "Wrapped in Comfort",Knit,Wildlife

I was curious to see how the lace pattern from Tara’s shawl would look in a hat. One skein of worsted baby alpaca, 3.5mm needles, there you go. (I’m told Martingale now sells a pdf of the book; Purlescence has physical copies and ships, and I’d be glad to sign one if you don’t mind waiting till I get to Knit Night on Thursdays.)

And on the wildlife front.

Young squirrels don’t have object constancy before maturity. I have thrown a nut into a large flower pot as they’ve watched and they were unable to figure out it was in there. Come Spring and a year old, though, they will.

A clearly new-around-here young gray spent a fair amount of time today trying to figure out how to reach a treat I’d made quite inaccessible; then, having spotted what he thought was a good idea, he explored how to get to the top of the barbecue grill. Which was not close.

It seemed to throw him that it didn’t feel like a tree. He wrapped a paw around the leg. Didn’t like it. Finally, after many tentative steps and much scouting around that took quite some time (can you climb up inside a closed plastic pipe? No you cannot), he managed that little bit of rocket science leap by leap to the shelf and then, standing at last on the cold metal at the top, king of the mountain, he turned his head this way and that, taking a good look around.

That huge sugarpine cone full of suet and seeds was still dangling above the porch. Getting higher up, though it might fulfill an inner squirrel imperative, hadn’t gotten him one inch closer after all. Dang. But… But…! He’d worked so hard for it!

But then…wait…how do you get out of here? He seemed to have forgotten how he got up in the first place. Down was not an option from that height. He studied how far away the olive tree was, the fiberglass ladder (he’d clearly already figured out you don’t want to leap onto that.)  It was leaning against a lopped-off trunk we’d left for the woodpeckers. And there, over there there was nothing but grass.

He was stumped.

And then I happened to open the sliding door. He panicked and took a massive leap to the tree trunk near that ladder–eight, quite possibly ten feet away. I was stunned. He was at the downward part of the arc by the time he landed and scrambled up, but he made it. Olympic Gold! The crowd goes wild!

The Washington Post declared it squirrel week, asking for photos; included in there is a black one with the outer rings of its ears and the bottom half of its face bright white, so odd that I had to look closer to make sure it was actually a squirrel. There are many reminders there of why these little animals are so funny to watch.

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Our squirrels are tucked in. Wintry mix here. The branches are beautiful – until they break and take out power, roads, cars, etc., or until I realize that means the squirrel airway travel route is closed due to inclimate weather.

I rather like the idea of a PDF file… Might have to go visit Martingale’s website and explore that option, and find a way to leave a comment about how that’s my second copy of such a great book, so sorry it’s out of print… Hem.

Comment by Channon 01.21.12 @ 9:04 am

It’s amazing how fast the young ones learn. Your story about that young squirrel had me mesmerized! And then he made that memorable leap!

Comment by Don Meyer 01.21.12 @ 9:14 am

a leap of faith indeed! thanks for the link — I can enjoy them there and not worry about what destructo mission they’re planning!

great hat — the pattern translated there very well

Comment by Bev 01.21.12 @ 11:36 am

Hat is too beautiful. Awesomely so.

Comment by RobinM 01.21.12 @ 2:59 pm

sometimes we accomplish our greatest things out of fear, not courage, eh?

Comment by twinsetellen 01.23.12 @ 7:38 pm

Oh, how I do love your squirrel observations! My mom and I are both avid squirrel watchers as well. I shared the link to the article with her and we both enjoyed it immensely.

Comment by Molly 01.24.12 @ 1:33 pm

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