Discoveries …

Today is not only Canadian Thanksgiving, but it is also Columbus Day. When I used to work downtown, it was a day that the bus was empty and you could sit anywhere you chose to, as so many regular bus riders had a three-day holiday. The business district was filled with various banks that were headquartered in downtown Detroit. Do you think those bank workers were paying homage to ol’ Christopher Columbus by savoring a fine Italian meal and toasting him by sipping a nice Chianti, or, … were they simply enjoying their three-day holiday?

When I was a kid growing up in Canada, I learned all about Columbus and his three ships: the Nina, the Pinta and the Santa Maria. My history textbooks informed me he was heralded for discovering America. Many years later I learned this was a misnomer – “fake news” – in fact, Christopher Columbus never even set foot in North America let alone discover it. Details, details – who wants to muddy up the story with details, right?

But the headline to this post says “discoveries” so today we’ll focus on a cute squirrel who discovered peanuts in my backyard and provided some photo ops to share with you. In case this squirrel looks familiar, it is Grady the Gray Squirrel that I shared stories about last Fall and Winter, and early Spring as well. You first glimpsed this cutie pie in this post where he made his debut, well … his picture debut anyway.

I first “met” Grady after I tossed him some peanuts when I finished my walk one morning last Fall. My Ziploc bag was nearly empty and I shared what I had with him on the ground and he scampered over. I rarely see gray squirrels in the neighborhood or at the Park, and he was so small and a wee bit skittish. He took his peanuts “to go” and I continued feeding him when I returned from my walk the next few days. Then I ran an errand one morning and was home later … there he was, sitting on the porch waiting for me. Sucker that I am, I gave him extra peanuts, which he happily accepted and this treat became a permanent ritual. Soon, he was joined by two black squirrels, a pair of Northern Cardinals and a pair of Bluejays, all noshing on nuts on the front porch. Well, I was willing to accommodate his friends who also showed up and I watched in delight at my front door. It was all good until a big, fat Fox squirrel (the same species as Parker) came along and hogged the peanuts for himself, parking his fat butt on top of them and chasing the other squirrels into the street and not allowing the birds access either. So he ruined it for everyone … I worried Grady or the other two squirrels might get run over by a car, so it was already April and I ended the treats altogether.

So last week, Grady showed up on the sidewalk one day when I returned from walking. Because I have a soft spot in my heart for dark brown pleading eyes and a swishing tail, I gave him six peanuts and said “now keep this under your hat okay? This is between you and me.” The next day, he showed up and this time I opened the gate and made him follow me to the backyard. I looked behind me, and he was obediently tagging along. He knew from past practice it would be worth his while.

Three days running, I went to the backyard and put some peanuts there before I left on my walk. When I returned, the peanuts were gone.

Friday morning I stole into the backyard after returning from walking. It was a beautiful and warm day. Grady must have slept in as the peanuts were still there untouched.

Nope, he was just arriving … I pulled the camera out of the case and hoped for a pose. He posed nicely and I’ve never gotten him so close up as he’s very timid.

Who could resist a face so sweet and innocent and not want to spend one’s “allowance” to feed such a cute critter?

So pfft to Columbus and his discovery. Grady’s discovery made his day and mine too.

About lindasschaub

This is my first blog and I enjoy writing each and every post immensely. I started a walking regimen in 2011 and decided to create a blog as a means of memorializing the people, places and things I see on my daily walks. I have always enjoyed people watching, and so my blog is peppered with folks I meet, or reflections of characters I have known through the years. Often something piques my interest, or evokes a pleasant memory from my memory bank, and this becomes a “slice o’ life” blog post that day. I respect and appreciate nature and my interaction with Mother Nature’s gifts is also a common theme. Sometimes the most-ordinary items become fodder for points to ponder over and touch upon. My career has been in the legal field and I have been a legal secretary for over three decades, primarily working in downtown Detroit, and now working from my home. I graduated from Wayne State University with a degree in print journalism in 1978, although I’ve never worked in that field. I like to think this blog is the writer in me finally emerging!! Walking and writing have met and shaken hands and the creative juices are flowing once again in Walkin’, Writin’, Wit & Whimsy – hope you think so too.
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47 Responses to Discoveries …

  1. susieshy45 says:

    Hi Linda and Grady
    That’s the cutest picture ever- I’m glad he’s become tame.
    And about Columbus- I’m assigned a book called – the history of the world in seven cheap things- in which all his deeds ( mis) are described.
    Less said about him the better.
    Glad the days are beautiful still.
    Susie

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Susie – I knew this would make your day as you loved the Grady stories. I’ve never gotten pictures so close up of him. He sure is cute – I had to include both pictures standing up on haunches as one he looks so surprised. Yes, we have learned, after singing his praises for many years that Columbus is nothing special and a lot of states and cities across the U.S. have changed today to Indigenous Peoples’ Day.
      Last week was picture perfect and very warm, but tonight we have frost for the first time this season – yikes! I wonder when it will get frosty for you? In Michigan people are hoping to salvage their flowers and even fruits/veggies a little longer, but a killing frost or a hard freeze might help the EEE mosquito-borne virus. But it has to be several days at 28 F (-2 C) or below to kill them off. Another person in Michigan died from it today. They have been spraying in rural areas (not near me) to try to kill off these mosquitoes.

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  2. Shelley says:

    Aw, he’s so cute – it’s a very interesting discovery that he remembered what time of year to return to his hero for a food source for the long winter!! He looks like he may have a patch of fur missing? Hope he is okay!?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ally Bean says:

    Grady has it going on there. He’s a much better subject on which to focus today.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Yes Ally, Grady sure has the cute and fluffy look going in his favor. Last year when it was so bitter cold, several times I said I’d like to scoop him up from the porch and bring him inside. I’d never get him this close-up as a general rule; he was headed over to grab those peanuts then looked up and saw me, a towering human looking at him.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Prior... says:

    oh you make a god investment in feeding these friends of yours – and the posing made me smile

    Liked by 1 person

  5. AJ says:

    Grady is very cute!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I like the looks of Grady! And those peanuts look delicious to me. 🙂 Yesterday, i had some pre-soaked, raw peanuts (with honey) as my main protein meal for supper. Yum! Ate a lot of green stuff too (and sweet potatoes).
    Just this morning, i said to Marla, “Why are we celebrating Columbus Day?” He didn’t discover America. He didn’t discover peanuts! 🙂 Leaf Errickson did. We might as well be celebrating Blackbeard the Pirate Day; at least he landed in America. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Grady sure is a cutie isn’t he? I never saw him up close before. He was on his way over to get peanuts and saw me – the OMG look on his face is precious! Peanuts are very good for you. I have a 1/4 cup of roasted or raw, unsalted sesame seeds every morning – they have a lot of health benefits galore and are crunchy. Sometimes I throw them in my oatmeal, but then they get soggy. Mr. Columbus needs to be stripped of his honors – he didn’t discover anything. Detroit and other large cities here in Michigan don’t celebrate Columbus Day; our new Governor passed a proclamation to do away with it and celebrate Indigenous Peoples’ Day instead – it has not become a law yet though.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, i like the Indigenous Peoples’ Day much better. Or they could call it Native Americans Day.
        I used to make sesame seed butter years ago, by grinding it in a special grinder, but now i just don’t want to bother. I do eat a lot of raw Almonds, Walnuts, and Pecans.
        Grady is super cute! Puts a big smile on my face. They are very precious creatures for sure. I love how coordinated and curious they are. I bet that the Native Americans admired them too. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        I’ve been including seeds more and more as I try to follow the Mediterranean diet, but I bend the rules a little to include dairy to maintain strong bones as I don’t want to take calcium supplements which are not always safe. I’ve included one Brazil nut a day as I cut back on sodium years ago and worried I was not getting enough iodine in my diet so included hard-boiled eggs dipped in iodized salt. And a Brazil nut a day which has a lot of selenium. Grady has been so cute and not so timid lately and I am sure it is because he remembers how nice it was last year to be fawned over and peanuts given … those poor squirrels cannot access anything in the frozen, snow-covered ground. I’ll keep him supplied in peanuts – he gives me a big smile too.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’m kind of on a vegetarian Mediterranean diet. I do eat a lot of raw nuts and vegetables. No eggs. Twice a week i eat non-fat cheese combined with organic cheese for supper. I drink some organic 1% milk (from Walmart) daily. Organic milk cows must be kept in green pasture a part of the year, so the milk is healthier and has more Omega 3. Calcium supplements are not safe; they can put calcium plaque on your artery walls. To best absorb calcium take Vitamin K2 (not K1) supplements in the MK-7 and MK-4 forms. K2 is what is needed to take calcium out of your blood and into your bones (where calcium belongs).
        Keep Grady (and the others) happy! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        That is interesting and I don’t know where I read about the calcium deposit, most likely from my mom who was told to take them and I read they could cause problems. I limit my Vitamin C which I used to take 1,000 mg a day when my mom was alive to ward off any colds that I might bring home to her. But that is too much Vitamin C and it’s not good for your kidney, so I cut back to 500 mg, three times a week. And I got a flu shot and am addicted to clementines. 🙂 Love them, but the U.S. ones are not out yet – they will be sweeter and juicier than the ones form Chile they are selling right now. I am hearing the weather forecast and giving them all extra peanuts.

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  7. AnnMarie R stevens says:

    Miss Linda………………………cute story on Grady……………………..lovable I think!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Now you have Grady trained to pose too! Way to go Linda!

    Liked by 1 person

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  10. Laurie says:

    Grady IS a handsome guy, isn’t he? I hope the greedy fox squirrel doesn’t catch on that treats are available once again in your back yard. I recently heard on the radio that many places are celebrating Indigenous People’s Day, rather than Columbus Day. Happy Thanksgiving!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Yes, I think he is cute in a puppy or kitten way, all soft fur and cuddly looking. And he runs like he is a pogo stick hopping into the air. Makes me smile. They are trying to pass Indigenous People’s Day here in Michigan – many large cities celebrate already … the Governor signed the legislation, but it is not a law yet. Thank you Laurie!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. I just googled the differences between all the different squirrels Linda. We get the western grey squirrels, the tiny Douglas squirrels and also what you call fox squirrels. You’ve really made this little guy feel comfortable around you! I’m sure the peanuts help! 😉 You got some great pictures of Grady!! I do have to wonder though how the squirrels can get to their buried nuts once your snow covers everything and freezes over. Those critters are lucky to have you look out for their welfare! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Thanks Sabine – I was lucky this time with these photos of Grady. All last year, I never got him up close, and I sure was lucky the other day and I held my breath as the battery was low as I took so many pictures the day before of the mischievous squirrel (which did turn out a little dark, but still usable – the look on his face when he looked at me). I figured it was sunny and the battery was fine. He is a cute little squirrel and in this picture you really notice his fur and how soft and cuddly he looks. I worry about them too as they cannot dig into the frozen ground and then on top of it, it is covered with snow most of the time. I think for them, they hide the nuts anyway, just in case … I’ll continue through the Fall giving them double the regular amounts of peanuts to keep them filled up with the ones they choose to keep (not many, most are hidden – I could tell that last year and this year with Grady as he takes the whole nut, leaving no shells. In the Wintertime, he and the other squirrels ate the peanuts on the porch, leaving the shells. They knew they could not bury them, though they tried a few times to do so.

      Liked by 1 person

      • The squirrels around here don’t have that frozen ground worry. At least not very often. Hiding extra food is probably done by instinct. I know that there are some woodpeckers who drill holes into old trees and store their acorns in those tiny holes. I once saw a tree that had acorns stuck in the small holes. Squirrels would probably love that! Hopefully your winter won’t be a repeat of last year! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        I think it is instinct too and this year and last, we had a week of very chilly weather in August, which is usually our warmest month. It was then I saw the squirrels begin hiding their nuts in the Park. I see walnuts in their mouths sometimes – it must be a tree in the neighborhood, there are no nut-bearing trees in the Park. So when I see them, it is a walnut that is dirty, so they’ve dug it up. Very odd. They were living on berries and pine nuts this Summer. I saw a woodpecker on a telephone pole pecking away. I had a picture but it looked too small so I didn’t use it, but I head it before I saw it – and then you wonder why you see poles broken in half – it is not always cars crashing into them!

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’m not seeing many squirrels here in the garden and that’s just fine with me. I’ve moved the bird-feeders around and for now their new locations seem to keep them at bay. I much prefer the birds! But I do enjoy the squirrel antics when I see them.

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        I see plenty of squirrel antics – I have to write about the mischievous squirrel yet, and I’m sure there will be other ones before the snow flies.

        Liked by 1 person

  12. Adorable, LInda! I’ve got a fat black squirrel in my backyard, who drives the dog crazy! Have a beautiful week. xx

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Thank you Selina … our black squirrels are pretty timid, as is Grady. He was feeling bold here. The Fox squirrels are pushy when it comes to peanuts. I get a kick out of them. You have a beautiful week too Selina.

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  13. Lovely to hear Grady is back on the scene ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  14. He’s decided that you are not a predator Linda. Each animal has a unique personality and so some will be overly cautious. Its a matter of peanut count. It just takes more peanuts for Grady than most.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Well I am glad that he trusts me now Wayne and he rebuffed me once in the Summer, probably upset because I stopped feeding him and his pals so abruptly after the fat Fox Squirrel took charge of the porch peanuts. He was so sweet and I think I caught him unawares and he still wanted peanuts so he posed there nicely, then I left quickly as I didn’t want to scare him off. The Fox squirrel and a black squirrel have been seen scurrying away from the backyard nut offerings, so that’s too bad … wondering if the black squirrel is Pitch or Tar from last year?

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