The fox went out on a chilly night

    If it weren’t for all the snow that’s been covering the ground, I wouldn’t have seen the tracks; through the gate, around the back of the house, into the chickens’ run where the tracks make a loop around the perimeter before they become a messy jumble just in front of the door to the coop. Not every night, but with some regularity.

    It’s unusual to see a fox around here. Although it’s quite pretty, this isn’t a bucolic neighborhood; it’s a block to the mini-mart, and less than two blocks to the nail salon, a barber shop, a bar, the Christian bookstore, and two dry cleaners.

    But the cold and the snow must have driven it to take some riskier measures than usual. At some point this fox sensed that although it would need to venture into a populated area, the easiest possible prey was nearby, clucking unsuspectingly.

    Which one of us will be more vigilant; the fox or me? I’m trying to remember to lock them in at dusk every night, and so far the peeps are all right. Whichever of us prevails, it’s going to come down to whoever is more easily distracted from our purpose, and I feel like this is where the fox may have me beat.

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