Five years ago, when we put in a pool, I never imagined the pickle I would find myself in.
Instead, I foolishly visualized my white pasty skin would somehow magically form a Caribbean like tan. The water would always be warm. A lifeguard would be on duty for when I needed an extra eye to be kept on the children. Salt would rim the glasses. And last but not least, that bikini that sat at the back of my dresser drawer for years would finally fit my body.
Oh wait. Time for a pinch. This really isn't a dream?
As you may have picked up over the years on my blog, aside from my loving dog Harley, I have never been a huge fan of animals. (That's right PETA, you heard me). So imagine my surprise when I found out that an inground pool (especially during this current heat wave) attracts wildlife.
Because we have such a small yard (honestly, the pool is the main attraction) I thought that maybe the animals would go and play in my neighbors yard where they could frolic and run the day away. (Frolic? Really? One too many fairy tales Mary). But as it turns out, the animals apparently enjoy a little pampering as well.
When we discovered that the bunny population was exploding, we decided to go and put special netting around the inside of our fence. Guess what? They ate it. Yes, apparently rabbits are not only known for their high speed reproductive systems, but also their innate ability to swallow property fence.
During the heavy snows this past winter we found deer and rabbit prints in our driveway. Rumor has it before the rabbits realized they could break in themselves, they called on the deer population to put a little spook on us. Seriously, it looked like the sequel to Bambi was being shot while we all slept that night.
Just two weeks ago I heard cries from my children's playground. "Hey Mom, what's that thing?" "It just ran under the bush."
After getting down on all fours, then grabbing the camera so that I could take a picture for my Dad (Self Proclaimed Wildlife Identifier), I came to find out we had a groundhog. While Pennsylvania may be known for it's famous groundhog, I seriously doubt Punksatony Phil traveled across the state just to take a dip.
And last but not least, let us not forget about the frog population. If there is one animal that grosses me out...it's the frog. I don't want to look at them. I don't want to hear them. And I certainly don't want to swim with them.
It all started about 2 weeks ago. Right after the groundhog left us. I found a frog at the bottom of the pool. And since Hubby was at work that day, I knew I would be the one who would have to fish him out. But suddenly, as I tried to put the net under him, he swam away. Let me just say, how fast that guy could swim. He went back and forth from the shallow to deep end. Had he worn a pair of goggles, he may have been mistaken for an Olympic contender. Of course he was sporting his Birthday Suit, which I believe is an automatic disqualification from any event.
As it turns out, I did catch Laurel. Yes, I named him.
Why you ask? Well, because as it turns out, he returned the next day. And the next. And the next.
Then one day last week, as I went about my daily duty of fishing Laurel out of my pool, I noticed he had lost some weight. A lot of weight. Whatever secret he had, I wished he would pass it along to the loyal netter who has been saving his life everyday.
But then, out of the corner of my eye, I caught a shadow. It was Laurel.
Well then who was it that I was trying to get a net under?
From what I can figure out. Laurel now has a wing man. Somewhere during the last 24 hour period Laurel went to the local drinking hole, got thrown out, waited till dark, made a friend, returned to hole, and promised his friend that a cool chick would come along with a net and save them both. Lucky for them, I was home.
It's been tough watching my tropical oasis be turned into a wildlife refuge. But as I see it, so far, the animals have the upper hand. The groundhog may have left for cooler weather, but Laurel and Hardy (Yes, he earned a name as well), look like they're here to stay.
Just one warning boys: Friday is mowing day. You may want to be at the neighbors house then.