The Great Possum Debaucle of 2011
I got to the barn last night and went in the water room to check on the cat, Miss Leroy, first. I worry about her; she's such a sweety but is deaf and getting up in years so I always pop my head in her 'bedroom' and make sure she's OK. She was there alright. She was cuddled in her open cat bed on the work bench...right beside her enclosed cat bed which contained... a possum! He was all snuggled down in the assorted blankets that are stuffed in there, toasty as could be. They both blinked at me grumpily in the glare of the bare, overhead bulb, no doubt trying to telepathically tell me to turn the light back off so they could get back to their slumber party.
I am one of those rare folks who thinks possums are finorkin' adorable. They can't help it that their tails look like that. I went and got a cat crate and put it gently up to the opening of the enclosed cat bed and tried to entice the possum into the carrier by crooning compliments about how cute he was and how I wasn't going to hurt him. He immediately put his wrist dramatically to his forehead, swooned, whirled twice, eyes rolling back into his head, and collapsed into a heap in the blankets, playing dead (or 'playing possum' ...if you will). If you have never seen this, I strongly encourage you to go scare the crap out of one and watch. It's hilarious!
ME: Come on Mr. Possum, get in the cat carrier so I can take you outside and set you free.
POSSUM: No. I'm obviously dead. Have a little respect.
ME: Come on now, you can't stay in here. Other people aren't so accepting of your kind.
POSSUM: Nope. Still dead. Besides it's cold out there.
ME (changing tactics): Get in the cat carrier or there will be a rake or other farm implement involved!
POSSUM: Move along. Nothin' to see here.
And the EMMY goes to...! He even had his little mouth partially open, drooling. Clearly he had played this gig before. I finally fixed his little, red wagon by tipping the entire cat bed up on it's end, thus sliding him to the bottom, threw a towel over the opening so he couldn't attempt any Vampire Possum shenanigans and lugged the whole works down to the compost heap.
The way things go in my head and the way they go in real life rarely match up. I set the carrier down with visions of him taking one sniff of all that garbagy goodness and scampering happily away. Not so much. The lure of the crocheted woobies and other assorted, soft, blankets in the warm, enclosed cat box was too strong. He wouldn't budge. Still dead. So I unceremoniously dumped his fuzzy butt out. The 'Thank-you-kind-lady-for-not-impaling-me-with-a-hoe-and-instead-setting-me-free-to-continue-my-wonderful-little-critter-life' moment I anticipated didn't happen. What I actually got was a 'Seriously? Sheesh-lady-we're-only-40-yards-from-the-barn-like-I-can't-find-my-way-right-back-in-there-the-nanosecond-you-leave' look before he bumbled, huffily off.
So... in review...Awesome Possum? Lost 'im! Possumectomy successful! I now I can add 'Marsupial Removal Specialist' to my resume of oddities!