The Way of the Crow



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Then, a funny thing happened. I was in the cabin loft one night, sitting on my mattress as I prepared for bed, when I noticed the weasel watching me. It was standing between two boxes about four feet from my bed, which was simply a covered mattress on the floor. I realized then the weasel had been making its home in the cardboard boxes where I had my belongings, and that we had been sharing the loft for several nights. As I sat there, the weasel edged closer, and seemed to be extremely curious about my feet. It was moving cautiously, but inched its way very close to my feet before retreating to the protection of the boxes. It was really quite funny to watch the weasel curiously approach my feet. 

I enjoyed the adventure of sharing space with a weasel and a crow. It was like living a folktale without being certain of its ending. However, I was more concerned for Spirit's safety. I realized I was courting disaster, and that I had to take steps to protect Spirit.

I decided to livetrap the weasel in a box. To build the trap, I placed a two foot square piece of masonite on the floor of my cabin, near the steps to the loft. I then placed a cardboard box (about twenty square inches) on this base, lifting one side about five or six inches off the masonite with a small stick, to which I tied a long string leading upstairs. I placed several books on top of the box so that it would fall faster and securely trap the weasel. Inside the box, I placed balogna and hamburger.

I waited for the weasel. It wasn’t long before I noticed it peaking downstairs from the top step. Finally, from my chair near the woodstove, I saw it run swiftly down the stairs and hide behind thea same landscape painting. I slowly stood up and moved nonchalantly to the steps, making my way upstairs, where I carefully positioned myself with string in hand, in full view of the box.

My heart was pounding as I watched the weasel move closer to the box. First, it poked its head under the box to check the meat. Then, it moved into the box, with the exception of its tail. I was uncertain about what to do. I wanted to pull the string, but was afraid the position of its tail would weaken the effectiveness of the trap. As I was contemplating the situation, the weasel suddenly moved, so that its tail was inside the box. I pulled the string. The box fell faster than I had expected. The weasel was trapped!

What a commotion! The weasel scrambled around, hitting the interior of the box from all angles. I quickly picked up the masonite, making certain to hold the box firmly in place, and ran to my car. The car door was open, as I had prepared well in advance. I placed the box on the passenger side of the front seat, closed the door, and hastily drove away from my cabin.

It was a spectacle to behold. I was driving like a mad man, one hand on the wheel, the other hand on the box. I drove for about eight miles, to a location well away from houses. I jumped out, placed the box on the frozen snow, and promptly lifted it away from the masonite. Well, you should have seen that weasel tear off! It sped across the snow, heading directly for the trees about forty feet away. It was the last time I saw that weasel. I still have an enduring image of it scampering over the snow.  

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