Could one little squirrel frighten a big guy! You betcha!
We purchased a house many years ago on a heavily wooded lot. Along with the beauty of living in a forest came squirrels. Within the first year of living in the new house, the squirrel population managed to gnaw a hole in the soffit and make the attic their playground. Around 5 am every morning they'd run across the rafters and sound like a herd of elephants stampeding through the bedroom. Patching their holes did little good as the tiny creatures would chew their way back in again. Finally I said, "Enough!"
Wanting to stop them in the most humane way, I borrowed a live animal trap from a friend. The cage had a single opening on one end and a food tray on the other. When an animal disturbed the tray, the door sprung shut. The plan was to catch the little beasts and move them far away where they could attack someone else's house. The plan worked well and I delivered the furry monsters to nearby woods, small patches of forest along the roadside and open fields where they could play with other squirrels.
One evening I caught a rather energetic fur ball who banged around inside and chewed frantically at the cage bars. Having to be somewhere later that evening, I decided to make a quick trip to our church parking lot that had a heavily wooded lot next door. I arrived, sprung open the door of the cage and banged it on the pavement to make him drop out. Only problem was he wouldn't leave. The harder I banged, the harder he hung on, refusing to be evicted. Soon people started showing up for the meetings at church. After no success, I popped the cage back in the trunk and called the wife on my cell phone.
"He won't leave," I explained.
"What do you mean, he won't leave? Just bang it harder on the ground. He'll fall out," she said.
"No, he won't. And people are coming to the church and watching me. Probably think I am some whack job."
After more discussion, I decided to take the caged beast to the middle school which would be empty this time of the evening. They too had a lot of trees. Once there in the quiet of the night, I could work at setting him free.
Arriving at the school parking lot, I tried again. More aggressive this time, I banged and shook the cage. I coaxed, pleaded and screamed at the fur ball who hung with a fervor to never leave. Finally he fell out, crouching on the asphalt, panting. I popped the cage back in the trunk and called the wife again.
"He's out of the cage finally."
"What's he doing?" she asked.
"Just staring at me." Then I saw it. A glimmer in his eyes. Something evil.
He ran straight at me.
"Oh, crap!" I cried on the phone, only it wasn't "crap" what I really said. "He's after me."
The monster from hell chased me around the car, leaving me no time to open a door and escape inside.
"He's only a little animal," my wife said.
"With very sharp teeth," I shouted back.
"What does he want?" she asked.
"To kill me."
On the second pass around the car, I managed to open the door. Leaping inside, I slammed it shut.
The devil animal stopped and glared at me. He took shallows breaths. His eyes dared me to come back out.
I turned the car around and peeled out of the parking lot. In the rearview mirror I saw the little brown fur ball in the parking lot, watching me leave.
I knew he'd planned something bad for me. He'd be waiting.