Tuesday, October 7, 2008

A Moveable Feast

Our sukkah went up this past Sunday and has already been occupied by some of the "second tier" guests who routinely use it, year after year. The raccoons have already come visiting and were not too happy, or perhaps a bit puzzled, that there were no crumbs available for their culinary delight. Our neighbor's cat waltzed through, saw nothing to entice her to stay, and stalked out with her nose in the air. Last night there was a field mouse curled up in one corner, clearly glad that someone had been thoughtful enough to build it a mega-mansion for it to take refuge in. Right now there is a chipmunk balancing on the schach, clearly trying to decide if bamboo matting is edible or just for show. And the birds have been using the beams as a launching pad for worm-hunting strikes on the lawn. And have I mentioned that ants, bees, opposums and rabbits are also steady visitors to the area where the sukkah is now?

I don't know what they are all going to do when the humans move into what they believe to be their private territory. The animals among us are one reason why nobody sleeps in our sukkah. The neighborhood is truly not ready yet for the terrifying screams that might rend the night should someone find themselves suddenly cuddled up with a raccoon. We have a deal with our critters: they let us bentch lulav and esrog, let us eat our meals and snacks in the sukkah, and we don't bother them when it's their turn. They, in turn, keep the patio crumb and garbage free. It works for us.

4 comments:

Reuvi said...

Absent from your list of animal visitors was one that decided to visit our sukkah on Sunday. My wife decided that she had time to decorate the sukkah after it had gotten dark. She turned on the light in the sukkah and then the screaming started up, so much screaming that one neighbor called 911. Turns out a few bats decided to nest in what they thought was a cave built just for them. I wouldn't mind trading our wildlife for some of yours. Our four year old has already told us that no way is he going into the sukkah for any meals. His sister has volunteered to eat with him in the house.

Lion of Zion said...

i don't mind the wildlife, even the mosquitos. but i don't like the cold and i hate when סוכות falls out so late

Dahlia said...

Our first married sukkot we spent with my parents up in the mountains. Because 4 families were eating in it there was a huge sukkah able to hold about 40 people. There were lots of tables set up and chairs in front of them so you really couldn't see the floor of the sukkah. My father made kiddush and then sat down for leshev basukkah and his foot went under the table where he accidentally kicked the skunk who was hiding out there. The skunk went off. You don;'t know sukkah disaster until you have been within a few feet of a skunk that is spraying. We could not eat in the sukkah for the rest of yom tov. After that my new husband refused ever to go up to the mountains again. At least raccoons don't stink.

tesyaa said...

Bees are my personal sukkah bete noire, but the commercial bee traps (which we use when we set them up before Yom Tov) really help.