Feet First

“It is much more important to know what sort of a patient has a disease than what sort of a disease a patient has.” - Sir William Osler

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    Friday, June 06, 2008
    Where the Wild Things Are...

    ...evidently, they're hanging out at my house. A few days ago I was awakened at 4: 30 a.m. by a ghastly noise coming from beneath my bedroom window: A growly, squealy sort of noise, definitely not emanating from fighting cats. Grabbing a flashlight, I leaned out of the window, stared down and saw a huge raccoon sitting at the base of the tree in my front yard. This thing was big - the size of a medium sized dog. I shone the flashlight in his eyes and he took off.

    That same afternoon as I came home and headed up the back steps I was stopped in my tracks at the sight of a good-sized lizard splayed across the mat at my back door. It's always impressed me how lizards can sit and look at you, giving the impression that they haven't moved in days, but as soon as you come too close to them they'll zip away so fast that you can hardly see them. This lizard was no exception. I didn't have to fight him for the territory of the back steps as he buzzed away and left them to me.

    Then, finally, there is a tree that grows outside my breakfast nook, now in full leaf. I had never realized before that it was a fruit-bearing tree, though I've lived in this house for years. I realized it this week when I saw a fat squirrel climbing through the tree. His goal was the tiny golden fruit I suddenly saw hanging on the branches (apricots? peaches? Some sort of stone fruit, anyway). Suffice to say the fruit is no longer there, though I rapped on the window to try to get him to cease and desist.

    For an urban area, Los Angeles has its fair share of wildlife. I once saw a deer heading up a hillside as I drove along Mulholland Drive; V., who lives just off Mulholland, has seen them more often.




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