Monday, May 19, 2014

Oh Deer

Did you know a person could sound downright jaded about ... deer?

We had a group of kids here this past weekend from the St. Cloud area. Middle school boys, very firmly "city kids." I don't know as I could use one single descriptor for the entire group besides that. Great kids, well-behaved and excited to be out and about ... but very definitely city kids.

At no point was this more clear than on Friday night, when no fewer than four of them ran up to me at supper to tell me the same story.

The first kid put it best. "Guess what?!"


"We saw real wild animals today!"

"Oh? What did you see?" We'd been telling them stories about bighorn sheep and mountain lions. I wondered if they'd managed to at least think they'd seen one of those, although the odds were really low.

"Deer! White-tailed deer. A whole bunch of them."

"Oh!" Huh. "Where'd you see those?"

"Right on your road!! Did you know they were there??!"

I found myself wondering, as I went home, when something like this had ceased to be exciting to me. I mean, I'm more likely to refer to the deer as "rats of the forest" than to be excited about them. A good chunk of my driving plans revolve around timing things so as to not see them, as they would do a fair bit of damage to my car. Common sense, sure, but also a very mundane detail to my life.

But I certainly don't remember the first time I saw one. Or ever being excited about it. Which was ... kind of depressing, actually. I mean, for three of those four boys that had to come tell me about them, this was the first time they'd ever seen a wild animal larger than a rabbit. It was a pretty big deal.

I have no such memory of my own.

So last night, when the young mulies decided to hang out next to my yard, I grabbed the camera.

I might not be a fan -- and probably never will be -- but it is kind of cool that they're hanging out 30 feet from my back door. "Go ahead. You do your thing and we'll do ours. But if that door opens, we're high-tailing it up this rock face over here."

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