You cannot make stuff like this up.
Last night was frigid. The actual temperature was in the single digits and the wind chill was negative. Therefore, all of the pets (Buckeye, Rainbow, Snowball, and Midnight) joined all of the humans in the warmth of the house. We even had an extra pet. Jill’s dog (who lives with Jill’s dad), Finlee, the Australian shepherd, came home with her for a “sleepover.”
Sleepover is a word that I use lightly. When Finlee is there, sleep is hit or miss, with miss being the usual winner. She whines because she wants to go out. She barks because she wants to come back in. She scratches at closed bedroom doors as she wants to be able to check to make sure that everyone is safe. She barks at bedroom doors that she can’t open. She tears up things (Christmas presents specifically right now), and digs through the garbage can. She also torments Buckeye, who is usually an only-dog, all night long making her growl.
So last night, add three outside cats to the mix and you can just image the “fun.”
Picture, with me if you will, humans sleeping peacefully in beds. The furry friends weren’t bugging each other, or the humans, so we will pretend that they are peaceful too. At some point, Jill gets up to use the bathroom. This allows Finlee to escape from Jill’s bedroom where she had been shut up. Finlee then starts barking. You know the kind of barking that I mean. The kind that wakes you from a dead sleep where you are certain that a bad guy has broken into your house to do harm to all living creatures!
I stumble out of bed, glancing to notice that it’s 2:13 am, then continue my search for the frenzied dog. She is in the kitchen, staring and barking out the back door. There is obviously something out there in the cold. And her mission appears to be to make the “thing” aware that it is trespassing. By this time, Jill has joined me in the kitchen to yell at Finlee too. There are also two cats present, trying to figure out how to turn off the dog.
Jill and I stand looking out the back door, trying to see what evil lurked in the darkness. There is still a little snow on the grass, so there is a large dark shape that we can see. Keep in mind that we have deer traipsing through the yard daily, so I honestly expected it to be a deer, or a herd of deer, or even the neighbor’s dog. Nah. Not the right shape and size for any of those. I flip on the porch light, but the “thing” is lurking just past the concrete at the opposite end of the swimming pool, too far away for the light to help us.
What is it?!? At this point I will describe what we saw with my newest version of the classic holiday ditty, The 12 Days of Christmas. Hum along loudly with me as we start with “FIVE GOLDEN RINGS.” Are you ready?
FIVE GOLDEN RINGS
Four wide-awake humans
Three mad cats
Two barking dogs
And a horse standing in the backyard!
What?!? Why is there a horse in my backyard? Before Shawn could make it to the kitchen to see what the ruckus was, the horse galloped to the top of the hill and out of sight. I’m glad that Jill was there to see it to so that I know I’m not dreaming.
Like I said, you can’t make stuff like this up!