Last week in this space my esteemed colleague Trent Campbell told a sad story about his personal alienation from one of the high art forms of 20th century suburban life: lawn mowing. He thought he fell in love with mowing while in college. Sitting in class he heard the grounds crew outside soaking up the sun and plugging away at the vast expanse of collegiate lawn with ne’er a care in the world while he slogged through a calculus lesson.
But what the love soured and Trent now despises the task.
Over the past few years, our little homestead has started to look like a real old-fashioned farm, complete with all the standard barnyard animals. But if you’re thinking things are all E-I-E-I-O around here, think again.
Nowhere in that classic children’s farm song do I recall a verse in which Old McDonald had some rats.
It started about a month ago. Early one morning while opening up the turkey house, I spied a shadow slipping away from the feeder.
“Perhaps it’s a little Beatrix Potter field mouse,” I said. “I’ll call him Cuddly Wumpkins.”