15 skunks (1 alive, 14 dead), 1 raccoon (dead), 3 opossums (dead), 20+ squirrels (alive), 1 nutria (alive), 1 coyote (alive).These are all the animals that I have seen while driving in the car since spring began. I did have to look up the coyote to make sure that I was right about that. Apparently they migrated here in small numbers when the western settlers started to farm those states. I am not sure that I like the fresh smell of spring here in Arkansas. There seems to be a rather large skunk population. Or maybe the skunks just aren't as street savvy as the rest of the animals and make better speed bumps.
Although I think that this is a really cute picture of a skunk this is not the skunk that I almost ran over. Mine was mangy and old looking and seemed to want to run under my tires. Luckily it was late at night and no one else was on the road when I had my first encounter with a 'polecat'. I slowed down, swerved left, stopped, swerved right and when the skunk still seemed too confused to get out of the way I hit the gas and got out of there before the skunk decided to hit the gas as well.
Strangely that is how I have been feeling about life lately. I just swerve from one crisis to another. I am trying to have a good sense of humor and one of the places that I most often find that I need a sense of humor is in the grocery store (aka Walmart). To those of you that live near a normal Walmart you know that it wouldn't be out of place to see some pretty poor parenting skills displayed at all hours of the day and night at your local Walmart. (http://www.peopleofwalmart/ is a great source of amusement if you have time to kill.) I never thought that I would be one of 'those' mothers. Sadly, I think I am somewhat of an anomaly here in town. It isn't that I am dressed inappropriately or that the kids look like they haven't seen a comb in weeks. It is that I am a two cart woman. I know that Juliet, Peter and Rose could walk while I did my shopping but then I would always have to be on the lookout for where they are and what they are touching. So I load them all up in two carts and Peter and Juliet only get to walk when the carts are full enough of food that we are almost done shopping. Henry also likes to add to the mayhem by being my 3rd child to know how to scoot out of the child restrain harness. So for his safety and my sanity he gets to ride in the cart until as I metioned before the cart is too full of food. Then I push one cart with Rose in the seat Henry in my arms and Peter and Juliet under strict orders to stay close and only use one finger to touch things while pulling the other cart behind me...steering must be done with one foot or passersby may become a casualty of 'The Gore Family Shopping Train of Carts'. So far I haven't gotten any more comment than the usual, 'you certainly have your hands full!'. It seems that the people here are much better at being polite than in other places that I have lived. Now if I can just get them to stop staring. It is things like this that just make me laugh because I hate it and love it and can't wait for Juliet to have the height to see over the cart (she does try to help push but can't quite see where she is going).
The other things I have done in the last year at a Walmart are...
-Walked out leaving a full cart of food because Peter threw a fit and I said we would leave if he did so I had to keep my promise. (I won't make that threat again.)
-Ran through the store holding Rose and Henry while yelling at Peter to keep up because Rose was going to have an accident...we made it just in time!
-Worst of all was the day that I had to get a prescription filled and waited at the pharmacy for an hour and a half. Did I mention it was just before a huge snowstorm so everyone in town was stocking up and it was lunchtime and Henry was still nursing. So there I sat on the bench near the line at the pharmacy feeding my kids swiss rolls that hadn't been paid for yet while breadtfeeding. Did I mention that I forgot Henry's blanket in the car and he kept stopping to look around at all the strange people who were stopping to look back at him.
So the next time you see a mother looking her worst with kids acting, well, like kids. Give her a break. That really might be the best that she could do that day.