The wild things in life make a story

It’s late Sunday morning and a gentle rain is falling.
I am on the edge of lamenting such precipitation because I could be outside cutting the grass instead of sitting here typing. But then again, as I see it, all things happen for a reason.
At least the rain gives me a break from hauling my watering can uphill from the creek to the garden and flowerbeds.
Every new summer, I mutter about the muscle work and swear the next time around I will have a water pump. That would-be oath has been on my lips each year since I moved here seven summers ago.
I guess the pump hasn’t yet reached the top of list. However, raccoons or some such varmint have made it.
“Little Miss” spent many hours of back and biceps ache digging an extended garden this spring. I went to the local nursery and purchased vegetable plants, including broccoli, green peppers, and luscious strawberries.
I could taste the fruits of my labour already.
I think my future bounty was in the ground two days, maybe three, when something promptly ate all the leaves off everything, leaving behind “Charlie Brown” bare twigs of pathetic nothings.
I, the master of the word, was speechless. Yes, I should have known better. I should have wired the garden to the fuse panel. After all, I live in the country where the deer and raccoon play—and they play more now that I don’t have a dog posse roaming the grounds for intruders.
Sadly, my two cats are not replacements. The best they give me is a long, flat stare when I ask them to fetch the mouse that just ran by me in the porch.
Strangely, there was little evidence of hoof or paw marks in the dirt of the garden. Either it was a very tall deer with a long neck or a raccoon tied to a tether that zip-lined from the barn roof and nibbled off the tops of my precious plants.
Being the imaginative woman that I am, I suspected the latter—a notion that grew rapidly when I spotted a big, fat, masked thief sauntering along the edge of the garden at dusk earlier this week.
I grabbed a golf club and marched over there to show the rodent what a hole-in-one looked like, but he got wind of me and made like a bandit. Suddenly, I had visions of raccoons living in the hayloft—dancing around up there and pooping out parasites all over my would-be dance hall floor.
I hailed for reinforcements from Daughter #3 and headed to the barn to turn on the stereo and smoke the little buggers out as “Bat Out of Hell” by Meatloaf vibrated the framework.
We must have looked like downright hillbillies marching up the staircase to the hayloft bearing pitchforks and steel rakes, and strutting our stuff as the song, “Sharp Dressed Man” by ZZ Top, barrelled out of the speakers that afternoon.
All we found was pigeon and sparrow doo-doo.
“Be afraid! Be very afraid!” I shouted anyway—and then I went out and re-planted my garden.
I reckon I’m going to have a bumper crop. It’s always a possibility.