Sunday, June 22, 2008

Did you want your squirrel bbq'd or fried?

The Texas Hill Country is a beautiful place to live, but certain things here are a challenge. Take gardening, for instance. We share our home not only with volatile weather, but also with deer and other creatures who make gardening a bit tough. We have learned to peacefully coexist with the deer and they generally don't destroy our landscaping. Our problem is a bit smaller and much more destructive. Our problem is squirrels. I used to think they were cute, especially since we have a family of three living among us and I would tease they're a mini version of we three. Then they began to eat everything, and I mean everything. They attacked every bird feeder I put out and left nothing for our fine feathered friends. Every plant I stuck in the ground they either nibbled away or dug up trying to bury their finds from the bird feeder. Now they even relax on my front porch like it's freaking Club Med (my chocolate lab is absolutely no help in deterring them-she prefers chewing shoes over chasing squirrels). Their cuteness slowly turned to annoyance, and the battle between human and squirrel began.

I've tried everything to humanely get our squirrel family to move (mind you, I would be happy to peacefully coexist with these critters, they just don't understand boundaries.) They could care less if my lovely petunias taste like Tabasco or if the soil reeks of blood meal or big cat pee (don't ask). I constantly complained to Great White Hunter about their little shenanigans, and expected him to relish the fact he was being asked to join the fight. Shockingly, GWH doesn't seem to mind and would only reply, "They're so cute!" To which I would retort, "That's because they're not bothering your vegetable garden." Well, about two weeks ago the squirrels moved in to the garden and in a matter of days everything except our jalapeƱos was gone. We think the squirrels invited all their furry friends and had quite the fiesta in el jardin.

To say GWH was a bit upset is an understatement. He now felt my pain, and headed straight to our local garden center for
laughter help. GWH came home with an arsenal of have-a-heart products humanely designed to help our situation. Nothing worked. When the last ripe juicy tomato was gone and all our corn was reduced to cobs, the hunter in my husband reared its ugly head. "Did you want your squirrel bar-b-qued or fried?" I heard him ask my sweet little boy. The problem here is that hubby is not joking. The next time I return home after running errands, it won't be the smell of canning peppers that greets me. Now I have no choice but to cross over battle lines and join the squirrels. If I don't, our family will be the next subject of Jeff Foxworthy's bit "You Might Be A Redneck..."

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