Friday, April 20, 2012

rocky raccoon...

The art of life is a constant readjustment to our surroundings.

Okakura Kakuzō (1862-1913) scholar and author of The Book of Tea

this week's weather has been utterly resplendent - i've been lucky to be able to spend considerable time outdoors.

bingo and i spent a couple days strolling through the local metropark - the first of days in the park was a magical day for animals. now we didn't see any exotic animals, but the critters we encountered were a particularly friendly sort.

our first close encounter was with brother squirrel - this fellow was so bold i was nervous that he was going to jump into the stroller!

a short while later we met up with a chipmunk. i was surprised on how close i was able to get - one expects woodland chipmunks to be shy and hesitant; this chippy must have felt that we intended no harm and she let me get quite close and even seemed to pose for a portrait.

much of the walk goes alongside the Rocky River; there were plenty of ducks and geese about - it seems as if it may be prime nesting season. and bingo loves calling the birds - and on the whole they are much obliging.

we saw a local ranger with her high power binoculars looking under the hilliard road bridge for the peregrine falcons that generally nest there. i didn't see the falcons, but i did notice a curious sight - a pair of canada geese who seemed to be checking out a most peculiar location for their nest!

while crossing a small bridge over a culvert, i felt the presence of another being - i looked down and lo and behold what should i see but a young raccoon busily feeling around in the water, i suppose looking for some tasty treat.

it is unusual to encounter raccoons in the early afternoon for they are mainly nocturnal creatures. however, raccoons are the masters of adaptability and sometimes a raccoon will come out during the day when they are disturbed or when they know that some tasty treat is going to be available. perhaps this raccoon sensed that bingo and i were on the path and could anticipate the lovely baked goods we were carrying from our pre-hike stop at the local bakery.

as soon as i pointed out the raccoon to bingo, bingo dropped some of the roll he was eating down into the culvert - i followed up and threw a piece a bit further out, closer to the raccoon. the raccoon sensing that we were friends, not foes, waddled towards us, eating the trail of bread.

for at least ten minutes we were just hanging with the little raccoon. it was very magical. he got very close to us. then the spell was broken as a couple other humans came up to see what held our attention; the little raccoon who sensed rather than saw the additional humans quickly scampered under the bridge and was no longer visible.

not all of our encounters were with wild animals - as we were leaving the park we encountered our friend lynn who among other things is a dog-walker, with her were 5 very friendly dogs - and bingo was in heaven as each dog sniffed him and greeted him!

i have long had an affinity for raccoons - in fact, the first time i was conscious of having an animal totem or spirit guide was with a dream visit by raccoon. had not mouse visited me later and gained prominence in my pantheon of animals guides, this blog may have very well been named raccoon medicine.

for those curious about raccoon medicine, here is what one student of animal totems has to say:
Raccoon is our comical friend of the dream world. His hands have great dexterity, and raccoon uses them to get himself into all kinds of mischief. His gifts are imagination, inventiveness and intelligence, for raccoon is an amazing problem solver. Raccoon is the perpetual student. The key is to love learning, and raccoon teaches us to observe life with an innate sense of curiosity. Thus, raccoon fully understands a situation before taking action.

the beatles rocky raccoon (1968)- the song first appeared on the album known as the white album. according to the portal this song is the last beatle song to feature lennon's harmonica playing.

rock and roll hall of fame trivia - paul mccartney (1999 inductee) was inspired to write the song while jamming in india with john lennon (1994 inductee) and donovan (2012 inductee).


Watson said...

thanks for sharing this lovely walk with us mouse!

Steve Reed said...

Wow, I've never seen a raccoon out in the daytime like that.

I love "Rocky Raccoon," an old favorite. :)

Gary said...

The raccoon really does look like a bandit from a children's book! Too adorable! I don't think I have an animal totem or spirit guide. I do have an affinity for pigs and monkeys. I wonder if that'll do.