One night we arrived home late to The Shack and, as usual, forgot to leave the porch light on. Forgetting the porch light in town is one thing; you have the neighbor’s light, or one from the street. In the country it’s quite another. You have to feel your way to the front door in a blanket of darkness while trying to resist the pull of Orion’s Belt. Sometimes my head is thrown so far back staring at the open expanse, it’s difficult to raise it again.
This night we pulled into our driveway, and turned off the car. As I stepped out and immediately looked above, a sound wafted towards me from the fields. It was the unmistakeable sound of footsteps (or paw-steps?) slowly crunching down on the tall, dry grass.
My breath caught, and body went still. But I could see nothing, even with the headlights on.
Sound does travel further in the country, so it must be deeper in the field than I originally thought. It, whatever it is. When R got out, I whispered that something is out there. He listened, and also heard it.
Cruuuuuuuuunch, Cruuuuuuunch, as if it were slowly making its way.
He yelled at me to get in the house. We had been hearing coyotes for some time now and as there is a thicket of woods (and turkeys, mind you) behind us, if they’re hungry, then we’re in trouble.
We ran inside, pulled out R’s trusty flashlight, and went through the back door.
I peeped behind R’s shoulder to see the pack of wolves, or by this point, T-Rex dinosaurs that have been incubating in a frozen tundra underneath the fields until just a few moments prior. And they were hungry.
Still, we couldn’t see anything. But the sound was closer than before, inching its way to our rabbit hutches. If you didn’t know, T-Rex dinosaurs love rabbits.
R felt me over his back and pushed me inside. Stay in there!, he said and I listened. There was something in his tone.
After inspecting the hutches a bit more and trying his best to dinosaur-proof the rabbits, he came back in.
I guess we’ll just see if they make it through the night, he said. And we looked at each other, both silently praying that we would make it too. T-rexes are also drawn to gray hair, so I knew I was a gonner.
We climbed into bed and held hands, like the couple in Titanic.
The next morning, I opened my eyes to a new day and yelled ‘Huzzah’! We made it! R woke up, and we ran outside to check on the rabbits.
This is what we saw:
Now, I know I grew up in the city and am still getting used to the noises (and in reality, the quietness) of the country, but this one did make me feel like a loser. The cows had been rotated into the fields behind us.
Sometime remind me to tell you about the marauding cow-deers my son and I experienced during a stormy cub scout camping trip.
Oh dear. I’m already picturing the worst.
Oh, Carrie, I miss you! You are such a great writer, I am sad to say I haven’t been reading your blog (or ANY) lately, but hopefully this cold weather and these dark evenings will make me get back into it!
Ashley, you are too sweet! And I miss you too. Hope we can get together, like, real soon girl.
OH those crafty T-rexes, disguised as COWS, those rabbit eating devils … be very, very afraid!! 🙂
Ha! I know. Who were they fooling?