My name is Pops and I live on a tree farm. The tree farm is in the middle of a very rural area in the northeast part of the piney woods of Texas. This tree farm exists in order to keep the natural environment around for future generations of animals and human beings. Some tree farms exist to produce more trees which are cut down and used in the many products that we use. This tree farm emphasizes the care of the environment and all the creatures that depend upon it to exist. I am the caretaker of this tree farm. I moved here from a large metropolitan area of Los Angeles California. While there are many differences between where I came from and where I am at, there seems to be some similarities. The similarities are that I just don’t know what will happen next. In this case, the difference that I observed was a white and gray skunk walking across my property again. About a year and a half ago I mentioned the skunk in this blog as the skunk walked right in front of my shop while I was working in it. The skunk is a much larger animal then I had seen before. It also was very different in the fact that there was no black color on this skunk. It was white with a gray stripe. Unfortunately, I observe and smell many dead skunks along the highways in this rural area. Besides the distinctive odor of a skunk, all of them were black with a white stripe. This white and gray skunk is not only different in its color but in its size. My hope is that it is a very old skunk and it has lived in these woods for a long time. The first time I saw the skunk it just slowly and casually walked by the open door of my shop. It then casually strolled under the fence that divides the properties. When I saw the skunk this time, I was setting in the blog room, my dog started barking as it looked out the window of the blog room. When I looked out the window, I observed this very large white/ gray figure slowly walking across the driveway of my house. Once again, the skunk just slowly walked as if it had no concerns for its safety. I thought my dog was barking so loud that the skunk surely heard it.
This got me to thinking, how something so obviously large and distinctive exists around any humans or dogs? Is this skunk so smart that it does not cross highways nor does it go near traps? Is this skunk a very old skunk who has fathered many other skunks in his time? Or is this skunk a very old female skunk who has reproduced many of the skunks that end up on the road? When I first saw the skunk, over a year ago, my first thought was to shoot the skunk at it is just come from the area my chicken coop. I had lost several small chickens and many eggs in the past week and in my mind the skunk was a suspect. And so I went to the house and got my gun and went back out to the location where I last saw the skunk. I was able to find the skunk walking about 20 feet from my location. As I raise my gun and put the skunk into the sights of my gun and I began to pull back on the trigger. Then something amazing happened, I found that I couldn’t pull the trigger to shoot the skunk. What was it that came over me and stopped me from shooting the skunk? I wasn’t worried about the skunk spraying me as I was a good distance away from it. At that time, I was convinced that the skunk had been eating my chickens and their eggs. Yet, with the skunk in my sights something came over me and I could not shoot the skunk. In afterthought, it may have been that I thought the skunk lived for so many years that I should not be the one to end its life. It may have been the fact that I thought the skunk was different in its color and therefore unique. Maybe it was the fact that it was gray and white rather than black and white and so it was a rare skunk. Maybe it is the fact that it was so casual and its gate that even the skunk knew that I would not harm it. As far as that goes, maybe there was something magical about the skunk that prevented me from shooting it.
No matter what the reason, I did not shoot the skunk. So I was very excited to see it slowly walking across my driveway a year later. With its size and color, I would have thought that someone else would’ve killed the skunk or that he would’ve been run over on the highway as he proceeded through its mating season. The skunk continued to walk slowly and deliberately without any apparent concerns. I am hopeful that next year this time I will again see the skunk stroll across my vision. Maybe I will research on why a skunk’s color and size changes from black and white to gray and white and become so large. I wonder if other human beings and other predator animals have run across the same skunk and decided to let it live. I think I will research this more and I will follow-up with what I found out and share it in another blog.
I’m even a little hopeful that I might find some mystical or magical story in my research. I might even find some lesson in life from the skunk. Until then I will somewhat emulate the skunk. My dark hair has gone to gray and almost white. I have gained some weight and I walk slowly and deliberately. I am more confident in where I’m going and so I travel at a slower pace. I don’t think I will address the issue of my odor and the skunk’s smell. I started to name the skunk, then I thought better of it. Maybe in my research I will discover a name for the skunk. Until then please let me know if you see this large, white and gray, slow walking skunk. Maybe you even know the story or legend that goes with the skunk. If so please let me know.