Ramble with Storm: Fox out of left field

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Mulling things on my morning ramble

with Storm, the family’s mixed Lab.

No, I don’t mean Marla Collins. Beside, if my memory from a quarter century back holds true, Marla sat on the right-field side of Wrigley Field.

But I digress, admittedly with a warm spring memory.

The meathead strained on the leash savagely as we neared the backstop at the town’s ball field.

He’s 75 pounds, so I have him by 100 (give or take some), yet he can give me a pull for my money.

My first thought was an evil feral cat or free-ranging housecat. But Storm was more insistent than he usually is for them.

Then I saw it, a beautiful red fox–looking massive and long in the half-light of dawn–trotting from center field toward left.

Something dangled from its mouth. It looked bigger than a mouse, but I had a hard time believing it was a rabbit. Maybe it was a rat from the small feed store on the edge of town.

The fox trotted slowly enough that I tried to get a cell-phone photo. But it only looks like a dot as it crossed the road.

Finally, it spotted us, and spooked into a run across the tracks and into the wilds of the town pond.

It was all I could do to hang on to Storm.

At least seven pairs of ducks were on the town pond. Some were just resting. We have a couple that actually nest nearby. Red-winged blackbirds trilled heavily.

After we circled the town pond, Storm tried to bolt again. This time I was smart enough to look around, and found the fox in the middle of the path below the old rail bed.

Then it was gone.

Tremendous.

And you are sadly mistaken if you didn’t think I would try to use this as an excuse to dig up a YouTube video of Marla.

My memories of her are a lot better than this news clip.

Skippy’s final line may be my favorite of the piece.

Yes, that is a tease.

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