Our Pirate Coast hideaway is a second story condo, accessed via a private covered stairway. This is nice, because it means our entry is hidden away from prying eyes. None of our neighbors have complained about the inflatable monkey who lives on our porch, because no one sees it unless they actually are coming to visit us (or, more likely, deliver something I’ve ordered online.) This also means that if I stick a bag of trash outside the front door, intending to walk it down to the dumpster later, no one is the wiser.
No human, that is. The raccoons know all about it. Twice now I have forgotten a bag of trash outside overnight, and both times the bag has been raided by masked bandits. Ugh. Coffee grounds and orange peels all over my entry mat, yummier trash dragged farther away from our home. Since the second looting of our trash, we’ve been very careful not to let a bag of trash linger on the porch past sundown. The raccoons have their beady little eyes on us, and they want our chicken bones. But it’s been months since we’ve given them the opportunity to feast at our expense.
Last night, after dinner, I got a call from Baba. “Did you find the salmon I left for you in front of your door?” (She makes wonderful fresh-cured salmon, and she always saves some for me because she knows I love it so.) I opened the door, phone in hand, and found the small package. “I’ve got it now,” I said, “and it’s still cold.” She said that she’d dropped it off about an hour ago. “I’m glad you called me, because I wouldn’t have looked for it otherwise, and the raccoons surely would have stolen it.” She laughed. She used to live here, she knows about the raccoons.
I had successfully retrieved the salmon, but the scent must have lingered. This morning, as my son and I walked down to the car, we found a raccoon’s calling card: a surprisingly large pile of shiny black poop, glistening on the landing halfway up our stairs. The raccoon, lacking the opposable thumbs necessary for text-messaging or Twittering, had no choice but to express his displeasure in fecal form.
Too bad, so sad, raccoon. My salmon-decked bagel was delicious.