Cool TailI stumbled on a couple of rats nests this past month. The native rats here in Southern California have hair on their tail. And they're cool. I point out the hair on their tail because these rats are unlike the image that may come to mind of a rat. The rats typically portrayed in the media are roof rats and Norway rats. They run around stealing your cheese and spreading disease. And their kinda ugly with their naked tail and all. Or, they have a charm and beauty all their own, depending on how you want to look at it.
The wood rats here are sometimes called pack rats. They are furry, they have great big black eyes and big ears. They're beautiful.
So a couple of weeks ago I was killing some time in this outdoor 'bone-yard' of old tools and equipment. I opened an old box that has probably been abandoned there for sixty years or more. The box was about five foot by three foot by three foot deep. I picked up an old gear an rolled it in my hand as I examined it. There was this old brake handle from an old car or truck which was pretty cool. But mostly this stuff was just junk that I had no use for. In the right corner was a piece of cardboard, I picked it up to see if there was anything else interesting to see. A rat, snug in it's nest looking up at me. I froze and our eyes locked for a period of time. The rat seemed bewildered. Can you imagine? I had just blown it's whole world wide open. This nest had never seen daylight before. The rat was probably not too happy about it either. I started the motion to place the cardboard back. That was too much. The rat was up now and was intent on excusing itself from my presence. I watched it wind it's way into the hollows of lots of old junk. I closed the box and walked away.