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Thursday, June 2, 2016

Screaming Chipmunk

Photo by Nina

I made a chipmunk scream.
Ever heard a chipmunk scream? It sounds like an itty-bitty little girl, vocal chords hopped up on three balloonfuls of helium, when she plows her face into a spider web. That has a wolf spider in it.
Here’s how it happened. I needed a good walk in nature to clear out the cobwebs, so I headed for the woods. Right at the top of the trail, at the start of the tree line, I remembered an important email I needed to send. So I pulled out my phone and dashed it off.
Then I glanced up to discover a chipmunk scurrying up the hill, straight toward me. I froze and waited to see how close it would get before it took note of my towering, threatening, human-sized self.
It never did.
The little dude sauntered blithely forward, right between my shoes.
And I’m ashamed to admit that my own inner little girl sprang to skittish life: I jerked my feet apart and yelped.
I’ve never seen anything move as fast as that little brown and black-striped rodent. He screamed, and continued to scream as he blazed a fifty-foot-per-second shot through the grass, to a shrub, through the shrub, out the other side, across a yard, and around the side of a house.
He was still screaming when he got to the back yard.
I didn’t know chipmunks could scream.
I laughed. A lot.
(Yes, I am a bad person.)
I took two things away from this encounter. No, three.
One: Cool stuff sometimes wanders across your path when you simply stop moving for a bit.
Two: If you’re a prey animal, it’s probably wise to pay some attention to your surroundings.
And Three?
I’m very easily entertained.

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