About a week ago, one of Valerie's hummingbird feeders disappeared off the deck.
"I can't believe somebody stole my Hummingbird Feeder!" was her first reaction.
"Why would somebody want to steal my Hummingbird feeder? Who would want to do that?" she continued on.
"Maybe it just fell down", I piped up. Now, we've been married nearly 17 years and you'd think by now I'd know not to get in the middle of a tempest. I'm odd that way. Or stupid.
"It didn't fall down! Do you see it anywhere?"
"Somebody stole it!"
"Why don't you look in the bushes?"
"It's not in the bushes! Do you see it in the bushes?"
Realizing at this point that a call will be dispatched to Wilton 911 any second, I think it best to mosey inside. I picture the conversation in my head:
"Wilton 911, what is your emergency?"
"My bird feeder has been stolen!"
"Your what has been what?"
"MY BIRD FEEDER HAS BEEN STOLEN!"
"Ma'am, that's not an emergency."
"I want the Crime Scene Investigator out here in 5 minutes! Bring your fingerprinting equipment and I want to see one of those black light things! Stat!"
This was not going to be good. In an effort to offer my support, I mention that maybe she look under the deck.
"Do you see it under the deck?"
"Um, no. But maybe that's why you should look there."
I threw a pizza in the oven, hoping beyond hope that the feeder is under the deck. As Valerie comes tromping back up she has a somewhat beat-up feeder in her hands.
"Did you put it down there?"
I pretend not to hear her.
"Why would somebody take my feeder off the hook and put it under the deck?"
"Some animal probably knocked it off" I added. Yes, you're right, I should have left it alone, but at this point it was getting fun.
She went back through her ritual of cleaning the feeder and refilling it with her secret recipe of super-concentrated nectar (ie. sugar water) before hanging it back out.
Three days later, we got home and there was the feeder, a good ten feet from where it hung the day before. The top was pried open and it was bone dry. We finally decided that the only two animals that might have enough intelligence and dexterity to actually move the feeder would be a Raccoon or a Bear.
My money's on the bear.