Already I have had requests for posts on a certain subject from two of my five fans…

One unique feature (among many) of my upbringing has been the role of animals in my family. My father is a soon-to-be-retired veterinarian and my mother has worked for many years as a wildlife rehabilitator in conjunction with the family clinic. So, in addition to many family cats and dogs, our household menagerie always included a rotating cast of injured and orphaned squirrels, porcupines, songbirds, hawks, owls, waterfowl, beavers, deer, possums, woodchucks, and other wild beasts. Mom has attempted to scale back on the rescue work as dad has neared retirement, but often finds herself sucked right back in. To wit, a recent email:

“Just thought I’d communicate with you one last time before Dad comes home for lunch and kills me.  Couldn’t help myself, couldn’t leave the poor little guy on the median strip, hurt and scared and shivering.  Now my truck and I smell like skunk. Maybe I’ll just off myself and save Dad the trouble.”

Oh, yes. Yes, she did. She picked up an injured skunk on the side of the road as law enforcement officials looked on from a more prudent distance. But it survived and is now convalescing in the outdoor pen of a fellow rehabilitator. No word yet on how the interior of the truck is doing.