Finally, last Sunday we were visited by chickadees, nuthatches, tufted titmice and a song sparrow. Also, five of the fattest squirrels I have seen in my life, two of which had managed to drop onto the roof of the feeder via our back roof or jump from the aforementioned windowsill.
However, I was ready. More to the point, Gracie was ready. I opened the side porch door and, literally, unleashed the hound, whose first thought as she leapt forward was probably along the lines of "Thank you God!" Not surprisingly, the squirrels have returned but I am more than happy to give Gracie an actual job (apart from her chosen task of harassing the children by lying across doorways).
Here Gracie maintains her occasionally sleepless watch over our lands:
Lest anyone think I have been slacking off, that was taken at the start of Raking Day.
And for those of you are wondering, the post title is Elvish for "Battle of the Tree-Rats." Obviously it would sound better if spoken by Cate Blanchett or Liv Tyler, neither of whom look a day over four thousand.