Maya’s Close Encounter

The latest saga begins in Greenwood at Hops & Fire where I met my daughter, Amy Elizabeth, and her wife, Mary, for dinner on September 6. We had a long, fun dinner discussion, ate too much, and then we headed to our respective homes after almost three hours. By the time the cabin came into view, it was dark. The first order of business after a longer departure was letting the dogs, Izzy and Maya, out, just in case there was a need.

Now this is where the story could be over-hyped, but, no…

Maya always heads for the right front of the house, the side yard and turns the corner. And she did that evening. Izzy wanders wherever she finds intriguing, this time the front yard. Now, Izzy has also grown accustomed to hearing Maya bark or growl and ignores her. There may be a certain anxiety in her bark or growl that might bring Izzy to react, but Izzy usually still does not react, except, perhaps to investigate…

Maya had just turned the corner when she barked and started to charge into the back yard, but, then, backed up a step, at which time I said her name. She came tearing across the front yard and right to the front door, pressing her nose against the screen, wanting to go in. She went in. Izzy finished her business in the front after heading to the backyard, but being persuaded to go the other way. I wandered out to the corner of the house with a flashlight, but nothing was there by that time. Everyone was then inside when, after heading upstairs, I remembered that Maya had not done her thing. Asking her if she wanted to go out, well – yes. She always wants to go out. This time, she headed for the front yard… With several glances to the corner of the house during the process, she did her business and came back to the door, sweeping wide right (away from the corner of the house).

What did she see? Maybe a skunk – although we haven’t seen one in the four months here and only smelled a distant one once on a walk, not really being sure it was a skunk at all. She and Izzy became very familiar with skunks at the apartment in the Chicago suburbs where we saw one or more almost every night. They knew they were trouble and rarely showed any interest other than steering clear.

Maybe it was a raccoon or opossum. They are likely around here, although not yet seen either. The one time something got into my original garbage can, the critter didn’t do a great job. My guess then was that it was a crow (the light-weight garbage can was not toppled).

It’s doubtful it was a snake – it was chilly and they are usually curled up somewhere by that time. Plus, the only ones ever seen were small things, like garter snakes or worm snakes. Also, having not yet seen one, Maya likely wouldn’t have reacted that way.

There are coyotes in the area, but, again, never seen. They are heard, though. Or was that a fox? She might have reacted that way to a huge coyote, but they are generally smaller than my 65-pound dogs. Wolves – not normally seen in Indiana – are much bigger. Foxes are smaller than coyotes.

There are bobcats in Indiana, but not known to frequent our area.

Now it could have been a deer, but she would likely not have backed off from a deer. Maya knows deer. We see deer almost every day here at the cabin. They do wander around at night. Her reaction did not fit her usual response to deer.

A person? Very doubtful – plus, she wouldn’t have backed off.

So what on Earth is left?

Sasquatch.

Bigger than a human. Fades into the woods. Never seen in the day. What else could it be?

Well, the plans for the cabin do not include any Sasquatch prevention ones at this time. Maya will just need to learn to co-exist…

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