Earlier this afternoon, I took my dog Watson out in back to throw the ball around for him. I had only thrown the ball once when we both heard crashing through the woods next to us. I turned and looked nervously because there has been a mother black bear with three cubs seen near where I live. I didn’t see anything at first, but then I saw them. Two deer bounding through the fallen trees. They were magnificent. Solid muscle leaping and running without any hesitation. Luckily, my dog was so stunned and confused by what he was seeing he came running back to me rather than after them. It was interesting watching Watson watch them. I could see his brain trying to process the information. He looked to me and back to the deer and then back to me. The deer disappeared around the back of my yard, and the spell was broken. Watson went right back to playing as if nothing had happened. I guess he knew they were not a threat and felt like as long as I was there, he was safe.
Last night I was walking my dog out in the backyard. I always have a flashlight with me because we have fisher cats, coyotes, and other predators in the area that I have to be careful of. So, I’m standing there holding my dog’s leash and he was off in his own world intently sniffing something on the ground. I was scanning the inky recesses of the yard when the light bounced of two glowing eyes standing about 5 feet off the ground about 30 feet away from where I stood. I gasped and took a step back, hating myself for all the horror movies I have ever seen. Taking a deep, yet shuddering breath, I tentatively looked again. The light bounced off the pale broad flank, up the long slender neck, and the softly curved head of a deer. My eyes widened as we stared at each other. It occurred to me that he had probably seen me long before I realized we were sharing space and he had still emerged from the woods and entered the yard. I was no threat to him. I brought the light down again because I didn’t want my dog to see him and start barking and scare him or wake the neighborhood. My curiosity could not be contained though and I kept shining the light and finding him ghosting across the yard towards the street where I could only assume he was heading to the nearby river. After he had disappeared around the corner of the house I stood there basking in the magic of the moment. That magic has stayed with me throughout today as well. This might not be the most authorial way to express this sentiment but it was just so cool.