Yellopig Is Free

Or, Recreating A Life From Scratch

No Lunch for You!

This is a quick report on the lively and gripping drama out on the back patio this week.

First, there’s a mystery creature that comes in the night and moves things around on the patio. I don’t know what it is, but it’s large enough to move the (plastic) tool wagon and the metal bucket. It came by the other night and made quite a racket out there, but although the moon was almost full, I couldn’t see anything, and I knew that if I turned on the light, by the time I got back to the window, all I’d see would be its backside scampering off into the dark. Besides, my current theory is that this is a skunk. I’ve seen skunks of various kinds around here in years past, and the fact that it’s alone argues against it being a javelina. In case it is a skunk, I wouldn’t want to frighten the poor thing by turning the light on. Nothing good happens when you frighten a skunk.

However, the moonlight was bright enough that I could see that the big blue lizard was sleeping clutched to the outside of the dining room window screen. That way he’ll have a good position to catch the early bugs first thing in the morning.

And indeed, yesterday morning he was already feasting when I got my coffee and opened the blinds. Then around lunchtime, I heard that sound that all little lizards should learn early, but apparently don’t: that clacking, chattering sound that means there’s a hungry roadrunner nearby. I looked up, and there was no sign of the blue lizard.

Now, I do like the roadrunners. They’re tall and odd-looking, and they make that very un-birdlike sound, and when they fight with their own reflection in the window, they’re every bit as entertaining as all the other critters. I especially liked the one that used to perch on my front porch light every night. In winter, he’d puff up his feathers (for warmth) as big as a soccer ball out there, with his tail sticking straight up in back.

Winter Roadrunner on my porch light.

Winter Roadrunner on my porch light.

(Not a good picture, but you get the idea…)

But I’ve had patio lizards in past years, and I know what happens to the lizards when a hungry roadrunner is on the prowl. So I went out and shooed the roadrunner away. It took some doing, too. He didn’t want to go because he seemed to know that there were lizards to be had on the patio, but I did manage to get him to go hunting elsewhere.

Sadly, there was no big blue lizard for the rest of the day. And there was no big blue lizard all day today. Late on the afternoon, I did see the second (smaller) lizard peeking out from behind the thermometer, and it occurred to me to check behind the thermometer for the big lizard too.

And there he was! No lunch for Roadrunner this time!

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