Thursday, August 24, 2006

Creature Comforts

I am constantly fascinated by where I live. While our house is not in the city, it is not really out in the country either, yet our backyard seems to attract all sorts of creatures. From time to time we have seen: squirrels, chipmunks, rabbits, deer, and even wild turkeys! And of course, various types of birds, especially cardinals (see my previous postings about “Little Sweetie”). This week, however, we’ve now discovered that a groundhog has made its home underneath the deck in our backyard. We spotted him one evening, snacking near the many plants and greenery that surrounds the deck. We noticed the critter when we opened the door to get some fresh air. Startled by the noise, the little guy (or girl?) bolted across our deck and scooted into the hole on the side of it.



This morning the groundhog—we named it “Phil” (okay, not very original) but it can be a unisex name—for “Phillip” or “Philomena,” came out of hiding again this morning and sauntered across the deck back to the same spot. We were able to snap a quick photo before Phil ran away again.

While I know it is a rodent, I can’t help but be enamored by the fact that this little groundhog has made its home with us. He/she is big!!! But also cute in a strange sort of way. Now, I admit that I know virtually nothing about groundhogs, other than “Phil” will soon go into hibernation for the winter months—most likely under our deck!

Yes, I know this groundhog sighting has absolutely nothing to do with genealogy or family history, except that it has provided a distraction for me. I know many “die-hard” genealogists will probably take me to task or have an issue with what I am about to say, but sometimes I want a break from genealogy. I know for certain that family history research can be addictive (I am just as guilty as any other dedicated family history sleuth), but I also feel that there are other things in the world besides genealogy. And, on occasion, I like to think about, talk about, and write about something other than my search for great-great grandpa. So, I say “thanks” to Phil for coming around and making me take 15 minutes to look at something other than my computer screen!

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