Overnight | Mark’s Remarks - Republic-Times | News

Overnight | Mark’s Remarks

By on November 1, 2017 at 3:50 pm

During these cool days, our thoughts often go to the wonderful things about fall, to being cool again and escaping from the muggy days of late summer and early fall.  

We pull out comfortable, sometimes oversized clothing which supports our natural desire to increase our girth, preparing for hibernation.

But I think cool weather reminds me most of all of nights when we’d sit on front porches or in old neighborhood trees and tell stories that made us feel all creepy and crawly. The sounds of crinkly, dry leaves blowing down the street as the wind whistles a little and the moon makes everything glow.  A full moon. Remember?

We are blessed with great neighbors, and one of our close neighbors had a mystery during the summer, but the story fits in better with creepy tales and things that go bump in the night.

Living near a large bunch of trees, it’s almost as if our neighborhood is situated in a wooded area. When the leaves vacate their woody homes, onlookers can see that the “woods” we live in are really quite deceiving; not at all the thick, lush, forest you see during the greener months of the year.

Still, as I’ve told you before, we have plenty of varmints running around. Most of them probably travel from one clump of trees to the next, nomads in these subdivisions that continue to take more and more of their habitats.

Indeed, we’ve seen snakes, skunks, foxes, opossums, squirrels, skinks, chipmunks, mice, rabbits, and deer visiting our neighborhood. Sometimes they are welcome visitors. We sit at the window and stare at them.   Sometimes we wonder and worry that they will cause problems, too.

The mystery started when my neighbor noticed an indention in her well-kept flower bed.  She showed it to me one day, and it looked like some fairly large animal had bedded down at one time or another, right in the middle of her hostas.

Being a person who is on top of things, she placed a small camera near the spot, just out of curiosity and also to see if the overnight visitor was something that might want to try to find a way into her house or might do some damage.

When she rolled tape a few days later, she saw plenty of visitors making their nightly rounds. There were, again, mice, possums, rabbits, foxes, birds, etc., at various times during the night and early morning hours.  

Not a single one of them “bedded down” at any point.  It remained a mystery.

I never did check back, and it goes to show you that I need to talk to my neighbors more.  Perhaps she’ll read my column and tell me how the story ended.

I’ll let you know if it’s something really exciting.

Mark Tullis

Mark is a 25-year veteran teacher teaching in Columbia. Originally from Fairfield, Mark is married with four children. He enjoys reading, writing, and spending time with his family, and has been involved in various aspects of professional and community theater for many years and enjoys appearing in local productions. Mark has also written a "slice of life" style column for the Republic-Times since 2007.