THE BARON DOES A HOUDINI
Yesterday morning after getting some beans etc. from the garden, since I'd be coming back again later to plant some things I closed the upper portion of the gate - which is all netting anyway (like the entire fence) so it keeps ground creatures out merely by the troublesome look of it - I then went inside and was up in the loft wrestling with some powerful editing concepts when Echo, downstairs in the kitchen, shouted "The Baron is in your garden." Not THE garden, but YOUR garden. Impossible, I thought. The noble beast couldn't spot, let alone get through, that tiny hole among all those holes.
Nevertheless I went downstairs, just to humor Echo's endearing (note explicit avoidance of nearly irresistible pun) hallucination, and there I saw out the big kitchen window not the expected absence, but the undeniable presence, of a large and fully antlered male deer in MY garden. Fortunately, the beast had just gotten in (how?) and was sampling only some weeds near the entrance - rich lush weeds, compared to his well-used dining area outside the fence.
The last time I'd forgotten the gate at the end of a gardening day, the Baron had come in the night to partake of his royal pantry and had dined on some weeds and spinach, with strawberry leaves for dessert, then left quietly by the same fully open way. This time, though, there had been but a tiny way in; would he find it instantly when panicked in broad daylight? I couldn't just walk out there and open the gate for him; if he freaked, I'd have a powerful horned creature tangled up tightly, perhaps together with myself, in one or more of the walls of my ruined garden fence and would have to call some wildlife authorities to get him/us out of there.
On the other hand, I wasn’t about to let a savage ruminant wander my garden at will, so I opened the door to the deck and stepped slowly outside, about 20 meters from him. He saw me at once, and dashed straight away to freedo... No. Not that way. He saw me, still there, folding my arms - though I doubt that deer sense umbrage - and dashed over that way to free... No again. He ran this way then that then this again, through my peppers, tomatoes, beans, potatoes, spinach, new radishes, baby cucumbers, goya, sunflowers... much wincing was exercised. But he could not find the way out.
Back and forth he ran, more and more casually, looking for his exit while I just stood there, quietly reminding him by my inaction that he should get out, but could take his time. He seemed to be trying to gather whatever passes for deer thoughts, then finally went back to that corner and paused, head lowered...there was a memory there... pushed forward and an entire huge antlered body slipped out through a tiny hole in the bottom of the fence. He was a cervid Houdini. Taking no bows, he whitetailed it upmountain.
When I went out to view all the damage he must have done, and to CLOSE THE #%&$#* GATE, I found that despite all that running around he hadn't done any damage! The only changes were one slightly tilted potato plant and one deep hoofprint in the pepper bed. Oh, and some weeds near the gate were a lot shorter, but I'd been meaning to do that myself on a larger scale as soon as the rain stopped.
Thanks for the head start, Baron.