Subourbon Mom


Playing Opossum (Beware: sensitive content)
January 28, 2021, 6:00 pm
Filed under: Country Living, Misc. Humor | Tags: , , ,
Peaceful, country living….what I thought it would be all the time.

Some of you may remember my old blog post about trying to humanely euthanize a chipmunk.  Well, apparently that’s a life lesson that I’m not getting right because it keeps happening. First it was a baby rabbit, then the chipmunk, and now an opossum.

But first let me tell you, my city-dwelling and suburban friends, there are a few things you have to get used to when you move out to the country:

  1. The number of guns casually (or purposefully) left by front and back doors
  2. The volume of sound that woodland insects and frogs produce from March to November; whoever called it “night music” clearly never tried to sleep with their windows open
  3. The number of leaves that drop in the fall – sometimes it can be mesmerizing, like falling, brown snow; then you remember you have to shove them all back into the woods where they belong, like the arborial warrior you are.
  4. Snuffling and coughing from those pesky Virginia allergies because you simply must enjoy hours of amazing bonfires (and because some HOA said we couldn’t have them for 15 years so, dammit, we’re burning every weekend)
  5. The number of critters that don’t care that you would prefer that they stay away from your precious piece of land: bugs, “nope-ropes,” (snakes), mice, trash pandas and coyotes, just to name a few.

Which brings me back to numbers one and five in the list, and the opossum.

One day this fall, I was watching the dogs bark at something in the woodpile.  I figured it was a nope-rope because Lily the Terrified has been bitten at least four times. Honestly, I was just happy she was outside. For weeks she and her sister Holly, Opener of Packages, had been staying inside because Lily was scared of falling acorns. 

Back to the woodpile.  

An hour later, I was pulling the car out of the garage when I noticed something lying in our gravel driveway.  It was an adult opossum. The poor thing had been eviscerated but was still breathing. This was beyond just “playing possum” – the end was obviously near.  

After I got done cussing the dogs out, who were standing by waiting for praise after their conquest, I ran through my options:

  1. Go back inside and make dinner without using butter or anything else from my list (not an option – I would never be able to leave an animal suffering out there like that);
  2. Run over the poor beastie with the car (not a chance – it was facing the wrong way, and that would have been even more cruel);
  3. Put it in the freezer like I did with the chipmunk and let it pass away quietly, but who knows how long that would take and I didn’t want Hubby making fake opossum calls to me saying it’s “C-c-cold” again; or,
  4. Whack it with the shovel and throw the body in the woods.  

I opted for the shovel.

I’ll spare you the details, but it took more than one whack for the job to be over.  I’m the world’s worst executioner.  For the record, I said a prayer, apologized and told the opossum I was just trying to make things end faster.  

Later, I called a friend who lives a few miles down the road and told her the story.  She asked, “Did you shoot it?”

Um, no…. because I don’t own a gun.  Even if I did, with my luck I’m pretty sure the bullet would ricochet off the gravel and into me.

Talk about roadkill.

So there you have it folks – before you make the brave move out into the wilderness, life will be different. But for so many reasons, and not just for critter problems, buy a shovel. There are days when you’re going to have to dig your way out of whatever adventure came that day.

*Note: I purposefully didn’t post any cute pictures of opossums because it would make the story so much worse.   


1 Comment so far
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Oh this is good and I love the nope rope ….

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Comment by lynchburggal70




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