Isn't that special? No. It's not. It's so not. This is the sight that greeted me as I stepped outside the utility room door with a new bag of garbage in my hand with plans to just stuff it on top of the other existing bag already in the garbage can and trundle it to the curb for pick up early Monday morning. Instead I spent far too much time scrounging around in the dark picking up old garbage and rebagging it. We had, again, been hit by the refuse marauder!
When we first moved here it happened a lot for about a month. Never saw the critter in question but saw the results nearly every day. At first it was a mild annoyance but it quickly escalated into full scale irritation. It usually happened during the night but occasionally I would find evidence during the day. And no matter how many times during the course of a day I would fling the door open hoping to surprise and therefore scare away the mysterious creature, I never saw it.
So as I say, this went on for a about 3 or 4 weeks and then abruptly it stopped. I assumed that the animal had found a better source of higher quality garbage and was relieved. I thought no more about it and was glad it was over.
And then a few months ago, I stepped outside one day to again find garbage strewn the full lengthy of the side yard. Clearly it had been one heck of a wild party. Back to rebagging garbage on a daily basis. It gets old fast.
I tried all sorts of things to discourage the creature. Heavy rocks, bungy cords, a contraption of wood that made it complicated for me to get inside but was a snap for the trash thief. Finally I brought the garbage can inside the utility room. Let me explain. The utility room, which is attached to the house is primarily used for storage but is also my laundry room. There is not a great deal of extra space and a garbage can takes up significant real estate. Also, well it holds garbage and especially in hot weather, may I just say, ewwww! I don't care to have my nice clean laundry anywhere near old nasty garbage thank you. So back they went outside.
I tried moving the cans to various places but the little so and so's always found them. And again, I wasn't absolutely certain what sort of critter we were dealing with here until one afternoon when Tim saw a fat raccoon waddling across the back yard. "Oh no!" I yelped and sprinted for the utility room door. Yup there it was. We were hit again. As I went through my now usual task of cleaning the mess up I noticed that the raccoon seems to be particularly fond of all things dairy. Yogurt lids, pizza box lids, cheese packages, all nibbled and gnawed on. Interesting.
Now we don't actually produce all that much garbage. Generally just a couple of bags a week. Most of the food refuse goes down the disposer. But apparently we have just enough to entice their super sniffers. Even when I double bag!
To be honest, I am a little bit impressed by their ability to get the lid of the garbage can. There are times when I cannot. I tug and pull and in general make an idiot of myself and end up, with a few choice words, walking just the bags to the curb and leaving the actual garbage can behind. The raccoons however, open that garbage can like it was a soda can. To be fair, sometimes I also have trouble with opening soda cans. Which isn't a flattering comment about myself, but still true.
Anyway, the second go-around of daily raccoon garbage can visits also, unexpectedly stopped. Once again, I was relieved. I did briefly wonder if something untoward had happened to the animals but chose to not think about that too much. Mostly I enjoyed NOT picking up garbage from all over my yard and rebagging it. And life went on. Until last night.
I know the raccoon is just living his little raccoon life and doing what he can to take care of his family. I do not want to kill the raccoon. I do not even want to hurt him. I just want him out of my garbage.
I am open to suggestions!
Yup, this is me. Some people said, "Sam, you should write a Blog". "Well, there's a thought", I thought to myself. And so here it is.