Home > City mama, the playground > Marauding rodents

Marauding rodents

It’s fall in New England. Okay, it’s nigh 80 degrees, but the fact remains that despite everything global warming can do, fall is coming to New England. The leaves on some trees are turning around the edges, just a gilding of gold, and the nights are cool enough to cuddle. Some days are sweater weather and the markets overflow with mounds of apples, quince, pears, and squash.

It’s all very poetic.

Until you’re at a playground.

See, kids drop food. It’s a rule or something. Kids carry around and drop copious amounts of food. And in the city, there are whole ecologies of sparrows, squirrils, rats, dogs, cats, mice, ants, and raccoons which would perish if kids stopped visiting certain places. I’ve gotten used to parking the stroller in a heavily trafficked location at the park so that sparrows don’t descend in feathery flocks to nibble up the dried apples The Child leaves everywhere. And I’ve seen squirrels get pushy, chasing small children who have Cheerios or other goodies in their sticky little hands. (The kids’ hands, not the squirrels’.)

But today, as I sat and watched The Child fling sand about her at my favorite park (one in Cambridge), a squirrel took things a little too far.  I glanced up in time to see it crawling on another mom’s stroller. “Hey!” I flipped my hand at it. “Shoo! Marauding little rodent.”

“Wow,” says other mom. “I’ve never seen them do that!”

“Oh, they are cheeky little buggers!” I’ve been watching Dr. Who and therefore speaking British-y on occasion. “My best friend was in St. James Square in London two weeks ago and one just hopped right up into her lap!” True story.

“Wow, well, there’s no food in my stroller so –”

“OI! You! Get!” I shouted as the squirrel I had just chased off from her stroller dove into mine and came out with my homemade protein bar in its greedy little paws!

I launched myself from the bench, completely abandoning my child in the sandbox, and chased ofter a little two pound rodent carrying a week’s worth of calories (for it, anyway) in it’s gnawing little rodenty teeth. Greedy little shit.

Of course, it can climb trees and I can’t, so good-bye protein bar!

I swear, the little ratty thing laughed at me from the branches of an oak.

So much for the poetry of autumn in New England.

Categories: City mama, the playground
  1. Wendy
    September 25, 2007 at 12:26 am

    Nothing a big foot wouldn’t cure.

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