The fields and forest behind my home, and the forest and lake behind the house across the street, are the hangouts of the local deer population.
And to get from one to the other, the deer have to go through my back yard, around through the side yard, stopping in the front yard to have a snack on whatever those flowers are that tempt them every night .. then they have to cross the street.
Minette alerted me to them one night, standing at the window, all stiff and in a kitten hunting pose.
She saw them out there way before I could pick them out in the shadows, the little bit of light coming from a street lamp ..
All the homes are dark, small porch lights are the only light other than the moon .. and street lights.
The first time I saw them .. I was looking straight at them and did not see them, they were so still, under the tree .. then the baby moved .. babies, they just can't stay still.
And I , whispering to Minette, watch them every night now .. we are enchanted by them.
A small family who travel from the forest and fields behind me , through our property and across that scary road to the gardens and woods beyond.
When I see them, Minette and I are really still .. I whisper to her, she is just frozen .. when the deer are out of sight, she relaxes a little. I know it isn't for the same reasons but I relax too .. they made it across the road with their fawn and a car did not hit them.
Tonight Minette was looking, I checked but saw no deer.
Then I heard a car coming and heard the honk.
I jumped up and ran to the window ... please, God, he didn't hit them, didn't hit the baby ...
Minette is all stiff and alert ...
They were all there, safe ... no cars were coming .. they cautiously ( and too slowly for my comfort) crossed the street, baby fawn and mama, to the other side and on to the bog.
I am going to put a Deer Crossing sign out ... threaten people to slow down. . the speed limit is 35 .. 55-65 is the norm. Which bothers me so much because there are small children living here too.
And this is not a highway.
So tonights Deer Watch was full of tension and a sweet baby fawn with its mama and everyone made it safely across.
I am considering buying carrots and celery and put them out there for them to find tomorrow night.
If I am here this winter, I am getting a bale of hay from the farmer up the hill. For my backyard.
For my deer.