In Florida we were used to getting visits in our yards from wildlife, or occasionally having the house invaded by them. Especially by reptiles and insects, since Florida has more of both than any other state. I heard once that when someone asks a Floridian how they manage to live with all the bugs, the best response is to “share the wealth”; pull out a handful of creepy crawlies and say, “Oh, do you mean THESE?”
In Florida I remember plenty of lizards; in fact, Orlando decorated itself with fiberglass statues of geckoes in the 1990s. Also frogs, which in the front yard could get to be the size of baseballs. And snakes (mostly black racers, but once we had a blue garter snake, too). Before they cut down the forest across the street, we had some visits from a gopher tortoise. Since that was when the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle craze was at its peak, I gave it the name of an Italian artist, like the turtles on TV. I named it Giotto, because it had a personality that was two-dimensional, like the original Giotto’s paintings.
Here, by contrast, we don’t seem to lead the nation in any kind of animal. I’ve seen hardly any roaches since I arrived, and certainly none of the three-inch monsters we get in Florida! We can even leave food on the kitchen counter overnight, and it isn’t infested with roaches or ants the next morning. Nice, isn’t it?
Though we’re inside the Lexington city limits, we get visitations here, too. No doubt it’s because there’s quite a bit of greenery in the city; I even saw a forest near the Baptist hospital, just south of downtown. I already mentioned the birds in previous blog entries. One morning last week I looked outside the front window, right after I woke up, and saw a rabbit hopping on the sidewalk. Today Leive told me she saw a yellow baby squirrel on the doorstep, and it scurried into a burrow under the sidewalk. Judging from her description, I think she really saw a chipmunk. Since the lot across the street is mostly vacant, who knows what other critters we’ll see, after the weather warms up?