Possible Rudolph sighting in the Ranchos
On the night of the winter solstice, inspired by the spirit of the season, my family settled in together to watch “It’s a Wonderful Life.” Partway through the film, our son got up to get a snack and was stopped by the sight of a mule deer outside our back door.
We’ve not seen any deer in the yard since August, when a few of the local herd helped themselves to the tomatoes I’d been tending to all summer long. I wonder if they somehow knew their feasting may have made me a little less pleased to see them than I normally would be. Either way, they’d made themselves scarce for months, so this solitary visitor was a bit of a surprise.
With its rather small stature and short rack jutting unevenly from its head, the deer looked to be a yearling. He lay on the ground with his legs tucked beneath him, and with luminous eyes, calmly watched us watching him. I tried to get a clear photo, but all my attempts were grainy due to the darkness.
We drew our attention back to the scenes unfolding in Bedford Falls, but the lure of our visitor kept distracting us. The next time we looked outside, the deer had made his way over to the barren apple tree and was successfully foraging the ground for autumnal leftovers.
Watching this lone ranger meander through the cold winter’s night reminded me of the stop-motion Christmastime hero from my childhood, Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer. But there was no Hermey the dentist elf nor treasure-seeking Yukon Cornelius to keep him company. The closest he got to Sam the Snowman was Sam, our son, but the deer didn’t seem too bothered. Not even our curious dog seemed to concern him.
Only when the boys decided to see if they could sneak around the side of the house to get a closer look did the deer high-tail it out of there. His enormous ears did their job; he heard them coming from a mile away and bounded off through the dark night before the boys even made it to the back gate.
Wishing everyone a holiday season filled with unexpected delights.
Bonus pickup week and tree recycling from Douglas Disposal
Douglas Disposal offers a free bonus trash pickup from Dec. 30-Jan. 3. Existing customers can double their “per can service” on their regular pickup day that week.
Christmas trees may be placed curbside for recycling the week of Jan. 6-10 on the regular collection day. Trees must be free from ornaments, tinsel, lights, etc.
Effective November 1, DD issued new tote placement guidelines. Customers are asked to place refuse totes and cans in the gutter or at the driveable road’s edge. Doing so enables DD drivers to “service areas more efficiently and with less environmental impact.”
Images of correct tote placement can be found online at douglasdisposal.com/ddi-news/tote-can-safety.
Questions may be directed to the DD office at 775-782-5713.