It was a dark and stormy night. Or maybe it was a cloudy and windy mid-afternoon. It doesn’t matter really because nightmares can occur any time of day. Mine just happened to be during a beautiful and sunny morning.
Before we get into that, let me leave a disclaimer. When Steven is away overnight, I’ll admit, I do get a little jumpy. And a lot of the time, I am scared stiff by things like a balloon floating down the hall. Or a frog croaking in the yard. Or the furnace kicking on. I do keep all the doors and windows locked tight and I sleep with a very large butcher knife. I’m not scared. I’m just…prepared.
But the fear normally sticks to just showing up at night. During the day, however, I’m as cool as a cucumber. At least I thought I was.
Jack was on the floor lining up his matchbox cars for what looked like a race across Wolverine’s face. I was on the couch with a magazine and a bowl of Frosted Flakes on my lap. We hadn’t been up too long so the curtains were closed.
Suddenly, there was the slam of a car door. It sounded like it was the neighbor’s, so I didn’t look up from my “How to Organize Your Entire Life” article. But then came a different sound.
My entire body tensed up as I realized the sound was coming from right behind me. I held my breath and waited.
I quietly slipped off the couch and back to one of the kid’s room. From this window I can usually see what’s going on out front. I looked for the mysterious car. Maybe one of my hilarious family members or friends knew that I was all alone for the weekend and decided to mess with me. Oh those crazy bastards I willingly associate with.
But there was no car.
I looked around for any single soul. Tommy has a friend who sometimes goes to the backyard and yells for him. Maybe the kid thought when I told him to come around to the front and ask for Tommy, he thought I said, “Come to the front of the house and tap on the windows like a freaky homicidal maniac.”
But there was no one.
I heard it again! This time Jack heard it too. He sat up with the most adorably confused look on his face and asked, “was that?” To my horror, he then jumped up and started to climb the couch. I knew if I didn’t catch him, he’d pull that curtain open and reveal whatever thing crawled up from hell to torture us. Or worse, a door-to-door salesman.
I snatched him up in my arms and swung him around. “Weeeeee!” I said quietly so the thing outside wouldn’t hear. Jack laughed with joy. It only lasted a few seconds before we both heard it again.
“Let’s go watch t.v. in Mommy’s room.” I said, packing up Jack’s toys. He thought that was a good idea. He played on the bed. I locked the door and peeked out the windows.
Eventually we emerged from our refuge. I never heard the tapping on the window again and so I opened the curtains. It was a gorgeous day.
I had forgotten about the strange almost-encounter, until last night. When the thing returned.
This time, Steven was at work, but all the kids were home. Jack was on the floor, this time pushing his Thomas the Tank along his new tracks. Laurie was close by with her face glued to My Little Ponies. Tommy and I were on the couch working on his reading. I was about to help him pronounce the word ‘schedule’ without sounding like Sean Connery when my blood turned cold.
It was back. And this time the curtains were open.
What I saw next will haunt me for all the days of my life. It was filthy and evil and my biggest foe in all the world.
Stupid. Freaking. Bird.
I don’t much care for birds (as you can read here). And usually we do a good job of staying the hell away from each other. But this guy was trying to infiltrate my home, my sanctuary. Even after I tapped on the glass, he still hung around.
This one is fearless. And that makes him dangerous.
He eventually did fly away. I’m sure he’s probably just a young dove trying to make a name for himself with the other doves. But, he realized I would not be so easily ruffled in my own home and therefore his scare-tactics were futile. He’ll have to come back with more than some taps on the glass and a smack of his wings.
After it was safe and sound, I took the kids out back to play. All was well until I saw this.
Do you see it? It’s a cloud-eagle’s head. It’s a sign, people! The birdie revolution is coming! Are you ready?