Gentleman Caller

This Spring I planted hydrangea in the boxes that flank the front door.  We had caladiums last year and flirted with ferns this year, but the porch wanted blooms.  My friends who know things about gardening (as I do not) warned that hydrangea might not care to be contained, but so far both plants seem quite content.

As they get no rain and are out of reach of the sprinklers I have to water - a dicey proposition as I can be a little careless with this task.  So far so good.  Every day (okay, every couple of days) I give them a healthy drink with a large green plastic watering can which must be held exactly in the middle of the handle or it spills small puddles from the kitchen to the front door. (It is not a can, actually, as it is plastic.  It is one of those things, like the red plastic cooler on wheels that we use for picnics, the aesthetic of which is so offensive that I cannot believe I own it or claim it, but is so handy that it cannot be denied.)

For the last week or so as I've gone out to offer the plants a drink, I noticed something has been burrowing in the dirt.

"What do you think it is?" I asked Bill.

"A squirrel," came his quick response.

"A squirrel?  It doesn't seem like a squirrelly thing to do.  What would he want in there?"

He looked up over his iPad, "Patricia, what do you want it to be?"


Then yesterday I saw a chipmunk scramble out as I went to get the mail.  The size of the hole seemed more fitting for a chipmunk and I think he's the one who's been here before.  (My friend Mrs. Green always finds it amusing when I think I have one chipmunk.)  Still, I wonder what he wants there.  It seems an unlikely spot for food or shelter.  Is he digging for sport?  Or to vex me? I simply can't see what can be gained. He works with great conviction kicking dirt all over the brick.