This thing (I think it’s a cecropia moth):
When I first saw it swooping and diving near a utility light at twilight, I thought it was a bat. Someone said it was a moth and I thought, “No way.” Then the next day, we saw it settled on the same pole. It was HUGE. We took turns staring at it forever before one of us finally touched it. It was so huge and fuzzy, I half expected it to start purring. After awhile it flew away, right into the path of a large bird. We all cringed in anticipation of a Gruesome Nature Lesson, but the moth flew on untouched. (However, the next day, Jason pointed out its dead body on the ground. Dammit, Nature!)
These two buds:
The black dog is Tobie. She is gentle and friendly and quick to remind you with a paw to your leg if you are not petting her. She is also extremely tolerant of Shorty, who feels entitled to everything of hers, including the sleep mat. Surprisingly, Tobie didn’t nudge him out of the way, but just used him as a body pillow instead. He was fine with that.
Our dog’s IQ:
We played cards inside the camper of some new friends. They have a wonderful dog named Molly who isn’t quite sure of Shorty but lets him invade her space. Molly used to scarf her food down too quickly, so her owners now feed her using one of those toys that dispenses food pellets one at a time out of a plastic bottle once the dog pulls a rope out of the hole blocking the food. Molly was a pro at it, holding the rope in her mouth and using her paw to bat the bottle backwards so the pellets could come pouring out. Afterwards, we thought it would be funny to see if Shorty could do it.
Oh, he couldn’t. Not even close. He was biting at the wrong end of the bottle – the completely sealed-up end. But man oh man, was he trying. He was using his paw to hold the bottle in place and biting on that closed bottle with everything he had. Sometimes he’d walk away, give a little shake of his head, and start all over – at the wrong end. Finally, I took it away from him because I was afraid he was going to break the thing. However, I maintain that he is not completely dumb, since he realized if he tried futilely long enough, one of us would feel sorry for him and demonstrate how it worked – meaning he got food anyway.
I’m smarter than you think, you guys.
The neighborhood bullies
While we were unloading the vehicle after camping, Jason and I heard some chittering and chattering. All of a sudden, two red squirrels came darting out of nowhere, skittering across the top of our fence while fighting viciously. All they needed were tiny swords to complete the tableau. One of them tried to escape by jumping on top of our pop-up camper and then launching himself onto the ground directly between Jason and I. I had a split second of thinking, “HA! Jason screams like a girl!” right before I saw the squirrel sprint jerkily toward my bare legs. So there were two girly screams shrieked in our driveway before the squirrel zipped away to a nearby tree to presumably laugh his head off.