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Spring Flings and the Flying Squirrel
...more of the Chuckie escapades ...
March-April 2003

Chuckie's Tune
I sing to Chuck all the time, esp. when he's in his cage and can't get away. LOL Here's my favorite Chuckie tune sung to the tune of "Mr. Sandman".

                     Mr. Chuckie, you are the one.
                     You are a wonderful son of a gun.
                     You have two lips that send me a quiver
                     And your tiny kisses just make me shiver.
                     Chuckie, I'm never alone
                     As long as you are my very own.
                     Please turn off you magic charm
                     and cease to humping mommy's arm!


Chuck Meets New Friends
Today, we had a flying squirrel convention at the house. Mary Jane Little and her husband, David Covington brought Sophie up from
East Palatka
. Bill Goss brought Rocky, Bitsy and Angel. With Chuck, we had 5 flyers and 2 ecstatic puppies (who were tied outside like dogs). Sophie was shy, but VERY curious and peeked out the entire time. Bitsy and Angel stayed in their nest box unless forced to be outside. Rocky and Chuck were out and about ;-)

Bill put Rocky in Sophie's cage and he hopped right into her sock with her. She threw him out in nothing flat ... we inspected the little wound on his tail, but he was OK ;-) NEVER mess with a woman in her own home!

Chuck was his usual sweet little self and was happy to shirt dive and snuggle with Mary Jane and David. He couldn't care less if mommy was there. The 3 of us (plus Chuck) went out to lunch and swapped flyer stories. A good time was had by all ... especially Chuck who loves everyone and is always ready to go.


Chuckie Visits the Vet's
I took my dog, Carley, to the vets today as she has gained too much weight. Chuck went along for the ride.

A group of kindergarten kids were touring. I heard them going through the hospital and looking, "but don't touch the dogs". I looked out in the hall and saw them with their teachers and the vet. I told the vet they could come see Carley and pet her as she loves kids. They all piled into the exam room and Carley kissed as many as she could while they petted her.

I said I had something else to show them and reached in my shirt and pulled out Chuck. He sat for a few seconds on my hand (unusual for him to be that still), ran across my outstretched arm and shot into my shirt while everyone (vet and teachers included) squealed in joy. I pulled him out a second time and everyone quickly looked before he shirt dove again. The kids were ecstatic, the vet happy and the teachers had to drag the kids out the door to return to school. The vet said I would have to come back for every tour ;-)

Chuck says forget it unless it's a 3rd shift job when he's fully awake.


Chuck Doesn't Go To The Okefenokee
When my sister, cousin and I went to the Okefenokee Swamp, Chuck begged to go too, but since flyers are illegal (stupid law) in Georgia, I wasn't willing to risk taking him there even though it is a National Wildlife Refuge. I was scared they might confiscate him and toss him in the swamp with the gators. I worry about such things ... mommies are like that, you know! Chuck is still mad :-(


Sibling Rivalry
I had 4 button quail hatch on the 15th and 1 on the 17th. Since the youngest is smaller and developmentally behind the others, I put her in a separate home by herself. I picked her up this evening and had her cupped in my hands while I clucked and called her precious (she is about the size of a bumblebee:-).

Suddenly, I was aware of soft fur on my hands and looked down to see Chuck at the top of my shirt hanging on by his toes and trying to see what was in my hands. When I clucked and said "Precious," he assumed I was calling him.

I'm not sure how he'll take to them, but he did ask if we could have "chicken" for dinner;-)


Chuckie Goes To St. Augustine
It's a beautiful Easter Sunday and a trip to the Mandarin Art Festival (Chuck sleeps through it unimpressed) and then on to St. Augustine is the order of the day.

We stop in at Dreamstreet Too to visit with Cathi. Chuck is happy to hop on her and get his neck and ears rubbed. He can barely keep his eyes wide, but he doesn't want to miss anything going on in the store. He stares intensely into Cathi's eyes. He is quite for a long time; then decides to shirt dive ... I'd warned her. Now, he is happy ... racing around and refusing to come out without a fight. It takes both Cathi and I to finally get him to surrender. We are off, but Chuck is in looooove!

No, we can't stay there I tell him. I haven't eaten anything all day and I'm hungry. "So much for love," snorts Chuck as he pouts and goes to sleep.

We go to the A1A restaurant and sit out on the top balcony and watch the St. Augustine Easter Parade from our perfect view. St. Augustine's Easter Parade is a combination of Kissimmee's Rodeo Parade, Tampa's Gasparilla Parade, Civil War re-enacters (CSA only) and anyone who wants to put crape paper on a car :-) Even the horse drawn carriages are out in force along with their very own "street sweeper".  My favorite was the VW with the armadillo (with the pink ears) on top. It was named "Easter Dillo".

Chuck is still pouting!

Chuck's First Experience With Death
I took Sylvia to an art shop a couple of days ago to see about getting her poster of the Jacksonville Jazz Festival framed. The owner had her dog there because it was very ill and the vet was treating it for a severe heart problem. At one point, I saw the dog was throwing up & told the woman. She said she'd clean it up in a minute. The dog was in a side room out of general sight, but I'd gone over to check on it.

I went into the gallery where 2 women were putting a showing together. Suddenly, I heard the dog yelping loudly. I ran back to where he was and he yelped loudly again and fell over. The owner got there yelling "Oh, no! Oh, no!" She was so upset. I was rubbing her back and trying to comfort her, she was sobbing and the dog was dying. The dog died just after she got to it, after several more yelps. I closed the dog's eyes and stood up. I forgot I had Chuck in my shirt the whole time and he was now on my shoulder.

Chuck freaked out and jumped off me onto a total stranger (Friend of the owner) who had no idea what he was. I tried to get him and he jumped onto Sylvia who tried to grab him (big mistake) & he bit her drawing blood. He jumped back onto the stranger who stood still (thank goodness) and I went close and he jumped back on me and shirt dove.

After Sylvia washed off her bloody hand, we left and drove home. Chuck was beside himself running around in my shirt and unable to settle down. I got him into the house and into his cage where he jumped into his nest. He slept most of the evening. He got up when I opened his cage door a few hours later and wanted to be with me. Poor baby. He seems his old self now, but he had a traumatic day ... me too.

I was so depressed about the dog. I got the woman a card and took it to the store yesterday. She was very appreciative and doing much better. She said the friend that Chuck jumped on was not an "animal person," but she was a great story teller and now had a great story she was telling all her friends. As she was telling me this, another woman came in and said, "Oh, this is the squirrel lady." She had observed the whole incident from a distance.

The owner said that her assistance (who IS "an animal person" was upset that he'd missed the squirrel action and said "That's the second time she been in with that squirrel and I haven't seen it yet." I told her I'd bring Chuck back to see him. She said to call first as he isn't there every day, but I think she just wants warning to lock the door;-)

Anyway, I hugged my puppies when I got home and told them I loved them. You never know when something is going to happen.


Chuckie & His Sweet Tooth
I went to the Jacksonville International Festival tonight. Chuck stayed home as night, fireworks and Chuck just don't mix. As I was roaming through the Caribbean countries, I spotted a guy with a large machete hacking sugar cane. He was chopping off 2 foot pieces and peel down the first foot. They were selling for $2 a stick. I went back later and asked the woman helping him if I could have a small, unpeeled piece. She gave me one about 6 inches long.

When I got home, I peeled off some of the outer covering and put it in Chuck's cage. He came out to play, but returned after a while. I was working at the computer, when I heard a strange thud coming from Chuck's cage. He was hanging onto the end of the can and peeling it like a buzz saw. I reached in and picked it up and flyer came attached to it. Boy, has he been having a good time. I finally got him off it and put it out of sight. I think I'll have to monitor his cane time so he doesn't spoil his appetite and refuse his veggies. Maybe allow some cane time after supper ;-)                                  

Chuck Mows the Back Forty
The lawn needs to be mowed at least every 2 weeks now. I have a yellow & green Lawn Bug riding mower and Chuck loves to ride along ... all be it, in my shirt. I love the mower as it reminds me of a brightly colored VW left over from the 60s. So, Chuck decides he wants to drive this time. "What! Are you crazy?" scoff
I. "It's daylight ... you'll fall asleep at the wheel and get us both killed." He reminds me that he rides the steering wheel in the car at night ... I remind him that that's at night when he's wide awake and he falls off the wheel anyway every time I make a turn. He is miffed and makes a hammock in my shirt and sleeps through the mowing. He sleeps through me using the blower to clean the driveway. As a matter of fact, he's still asleep. See! I was right.


Chuckie Counts Coup
A new game was invented tonight my Himself. I have a belt made of a tiny rope in my drawstring shorts. I twirled both ends in opposite circles and Chuck ran the gauntlet. Each time he passed through, he'd jump on my hand, grab a finger and bite it gently and speed away to regroup and run it again. He counted coup 12 times before he tired and left for a wheel break.

NEXT... Summertime and the Squirrel