Two nights ago at five o’clock at night, I was standing outside looking up into the nearly dark sky. A faint line of light trailed along the horizon. Hazy lavender touched the earth and a line of pink topped it off. That mix of colors and mist slipped upward into the dark night sky.
As I faced the west, the waxing crescent moon was to my right with planet Jupiter sitting brightly on its left.
The air was cooler, close to freezing cold. My hands and nose were cold. I could see my breath as I stood in the deepening darkness. I looked up into the trees; the branches took on a silvery cast.
I called to Uriah. His hackles were raised and he was barking towards the path. I called him back, time to head into the house.
Two hours later, I was back outside. I had to keep telling the dog to stay close. I could hear the coyotes they sounded like they were to the east and south of us. They were coming closer.
Why is it, when you want a dog to do his business instead he decides to sniff around and waste time. I was getting nervous. Different sounds were coming out of the darkness. Sticks snapping, a faint growl, the dried grass was rustling as if something were walking through.
I did not want an altercation between a younger animal and Uriah. He is eleven and a half, just because he thinks he’s big stuff, doesn’t make it true.
Uriah watched me, and then turned to the trees. I had him walk with me towards the front of the house. I kept talking, he continued to growl, and mutter. He sounded a lot like my grandfather; complaining about noise, kids, and pigeons.
It was dark, and a foggy haze settled in around the trees. The air felt electrically charged. I’ve lived out here long enough to pay attention to my inner warning system. We headed to the house. Uriah came inside,… reluctantly.
I had just enough time to wash my hands and sit down at the computer. When my old cat PJ, sat up from a sound sleep and hid in the hall closet.
When I first moved out here, fourteen years ago, PJ was chased by a coyote. PJ outran the coyote. My closest neighbor at that time said, “They never saw a cat run so fast.” I hadn’t realized that a coyote can reach speeds up to 43 mph. That had happened in the middle of a day with bright sunshine.
I cracked open the window and shut it right away. There was a pack of coyotes in my yard. No more than twenty feet from the window I opened. The high pitch ‘yapping’ and ‘yipping’ flowed into the room. One of the animals howled, his was a deeper sound. Not the high pitch ‘yip’ I normally heard.
I wasn’t afraid of them. I respect them enough to say out of their way. But I did open a window upstairs and tell them to leave. Of course they didn’t listen. My voice is too shrill, I had to deepen it, and then tell them to leave. Finally they stopped making noise and left. That silence lasted until ten o’clock, after that they returned every hour – all- night- long.
Last night was quiet. The rain and fog moved in blocking the moon, Jupiter should be on the right side of the first quarter moon tonight.
So far nothing is moving out there tonight.
That not true! I can hear that irritating rat, shuffling around the dog kennel…
Picture from Hubble site.org