Thursday, December 3, 2015

Critical Crustacean Crisis

Maine lobster? Nope, it's the elusive Northern Virginia Pond Mud lobster.

You see, I was walking my dog on the trail near the pond before work yesterday (while second guessing my decision to wear my favorite half-leather half-quilted over-the-knee riding boots, when I thought I saw a giant brown leaf. Much to my surprise, it was not a leaf but a soon to be extinct Aldie pond lobster. Immediately I hurried my dog on to her business so that I could run home and get a camera b/c surely no one would have believed me.

Back at the house I decided I also needed to save the poor thing from his soon to be extinction 10 feet away on the busy street. I grabbed my phone camera, a red bucket ('cause you know I wasn't touching it, and a yellow shovel ('cause you know I wasn't getting close). I am sure I was quite a sight for my neighbors in my thigh high leather and quilted boots with that big red bucket and yellow shovel running across the street.

As I neared the displaced creature, I pondered my rescue method. First I tried to scoop him (or her) up with the shovel, but he (or she) stood up and clawed at me. I then tried to shovel it into the bucket, and it turned its tail under and snapped his claws fighting for dear life -- or so it thought. Finally, after many attempts, I used the bucket and shovel together and got him in. Then I ran to the pond to throw it in before it tried to climb out. That’s when something small, black, furry, and fast shot across the grass just a few inches in front of me. I screamed, the bucket went flying into the pond, and I skidded across the grass. The heel flew off of my leather and quilted black knee high boots, the red bucket lay in the pond and Virginia Mud Lobster lay in the grass facing the wrong direction again. I hobbled back up the hill the retrieve my shovel while thinking about “survival of the fittest.”

My soft heart won and I decided to go back using the shovel now to fish out my bucket and scoop up the crustacean to throw into the murky water --  all while looking over my shoulder for the furry running beast. As I hobbled home with my heel in my hand, yellow shovel over my shoulder, and little red bucket in my other hand, I couldn't help but think that if it were any bigger, it would have been in my pot instead!

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