Digging for Treasure

Now that I’ve tasted the fruits of my labor and proven that all of my gardening misadventures aren’t for naught, I’ve been more protective than ever of those wee sprouts and vines. Provided that this streak of good fortune continues, the possibilities for fresh fruits and veggies just seems to stretch out endlessly before me, and I don’t want to do anything that might jeopardize that. Of course, while my head was in the clouds, a million miles away from earth, my poor little garden remained completely unguarded and vulnerable to predators.

The very next day when I wandered out to water those thirsty plants, my lapse was evident. Shocked that such destruction could have occurred in that short period of time, I couldn’t believe the scene that awaited me outside. Holes of all sizes and depths speckled the soft earth, almost as if countless mines lurking just below the surface had suddenly been triggered. Thankfully, most of the plants themselves remained unharmed and just as vivacious as ever. Still, I couldn’t begin to guess what sort of creature had caused this, or even how they had managed to penetrate my makeshift fence. Determined to know the truth, I decided right then and there that I would wait until they returned, or at least stick around to ensure the safety of the garden.

Settling in just far enough to be invisible from approaching critters, I hunkered down and awaited the return of this destructive devil. Afternoon came and went, and the warm sunshine beat down with vigor, causing my eyelids to grow heavy and my focus to wane. Before long I must have fallen asleep, because I suddenly startled to attention upon hearing the sound of scratching coming from the garden. I knew it could only be the perpetrator returned to the scene of the crime, but I didn’t know what just who that might be.

Expecting to find a tiny chipmunk clawing away at the dirt, I nearly did a double take when I saw this sizable young pup instead! Slightly intimidated and unprepared, I hesitated for a moment before stepping up to the plate and calling him out, for this behavior simply had to stop. Looking up with soil still lodged between his padded toes, he stood his ground despite the look of sheer terror across his face. Instantly regretting my harsh exclamation, I quickly apologized and explained myself, hoping he would do the same.

In an instant, it became clear that the dirty little dog never had malicious intentions to harm my garden. Instead, it seemed that he only wished to find his long lost bone, buried someplace that his memory refused to share. Since my own powers of recollection aren’t exactly the sharpest, I sympathized with the confused canine, and promised to let him know if I came across his treasure on the one condition that he stopped looking in my defenseless garden. Distraught to lose that possible burying ground, he was reluctant to agree, but to my great relief an amicable truce was made all the same.

Ever since our first encounter, I have spotted a number of fresh holes skirting the property… But as long as they aren’t amongst my blossoming vegetable plants, I don’t mind stepping more carefully around these new craters!