Raccoon Run

For two weeks I’ve changed my rhythms, going out to run at 5. It helped me get through the holidays that turned into a John Waters Christmas. All I needed was Divine to come back from the dead escorting my mother.

The park is pitch black at that hour, lit only by its lamp posts giving off just enough light to keep you on your route.

Only a handful of runners are out, along with a colony of raccoons, heading home.

Usually they skedaddle when they see you, but this hasn’t been the case with me. They tool on by as if to say…this is early, even for you.

I of course respect their territory, politely stopping to let them pass. One had his paws filled with contraband lifted from one of the trash bins.

When you see a lot of trash on the ground, it’s not from sloppy park-goers, but the coons who pick and choose what they’d like, forgetting to put the rejects back in the can.

They’re young, many of them, and I’m sure like all kids, have messy rooms.

They’re also shy creatures, another reason they prefer night to day, something we can all relate to.

Sometimes you just don’t want to deal with the outside world.

People think when you happen to glimpse one at dawn, he’s diseased, but not necessarily. He’s just late, missing curfew…again. You can tell because they run faster, hoping mom doesn’t catch them.

I always picture the mother pacing up and down in the tree half worried, half pissed, sending him to that messy room.

You’re grounded for a week Rocky, or in his case, tree-ed till you can learn to respect the rules.

I’ll end with a story my friend Anthony, who has a cabin upstate, told me.

He had a dresser on his porch he was planning on stripping and refinishing that had several drawers. Every morning he’d get up to find them scattered across the yard.

He finally stayed up to catch whoever it was, and sure enough, a raccoon, the size of Pittsburgh, tooled up the steps opening each one to see if he’d find anything interesting.

Anthony, a big nature lover, was so charmed, he just sat and watched.

The next night when Mr. Raccoon came, he found the drawers filled with a buffet of canned goods.

Don’t you know he made several trips, and left the drawers alone.

How I love that story.     




About Susannah Bianchi

I'm just a girl who likes to write slightly on slant. I've had a career in fashion, dabbled in film and to be honest, I don't like talking about myself. Now my posts are another matter so I will let them speak for themselves. My eBooks, A New York Diary, Model Behavior: Friends For Life and Notes From A Working Cat can be found on Amazon.com. Thanks.
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49 Responses to Raccoon Run

  1. Dale says:

    I dunno that I like you running in the dark at 5 am, young lady…
    That said, I love this whole post! Your descriptions of the messy racoons and the mom being pissed, comparing it to the two-legged kids. Wonderful!
    And Anthony is the biggest sweetheart out there.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That story warms me. If you’ve ever watched them they’re fascinating the way they can pick things up like we do. And they’re fussy. They clearly don’t drink diet soda since coke cans are everywhere. Mom probably doesn’t allow them to have it. LOL

      Liked by 1 person

  2. skinnyuz2b says:

    You can’t help but love raccoons. Their little masked faces, playfulness, and cleverness draw you in like magnets. We had a family of four (no papa) that made a home in a hollow part over our porch. They were so cute. The babies weren’t afraid at all, but the mom gave a low sound that warned them not to get too close. We didn’t feed them and covered their entry spot with metal when the youngsters were old enough to finally venture out for the day. One season of porch dwellers was sufficient. They made a mess to be cleaned up, but watching them was worth it.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I loved this post about raccoons. I grew up in the South where many people had an entirely different relationship with raccoons.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. aFrankAngle says:

    Wow … such an early bird runner. Cheers to your efforts. But you had me laughing about the raccoon kids having messy rooms. That place must be a wreck! Cheers to Anthony.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Elle Knowles says:

    We have regular visits from a certain raccoon we have watched grow from a tiny baby. The whole family use to come up to eat the cat food, but he’s now on his own. H feeds him regularly. I fear he may walk right in the door if I left it open.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Sorryless says:

    Running alone in the park, I hope you bring mace.

    As for raccoons, I’ve had a few run ins with them and I know better than to mess with their strut. They are always on a mission. Whereas squirrels ponder and fret and rabbits scurry, raccoons are all business. Cute as all get out, just don’t get in their way.


  7. Love everything about this post (which does NOT mean you’ll see me out and running in the park at 5am. Actually, you probably won’t see me running, in the park of out of the park, at any given time … Walking? Sure. Running? Nah … My spine won’t stand for that. Literally … ;)). It amazes me how many people don’t know about the raccoons in the park. They think the only mammals that live there are squirrels (and therefore are also blind to rats and mice and chipmunks, and the occasional coyote and some stray dogs and cats and who knows what else). Messy little dudes and gals they are, though. I can only imagine their Mama tearing her fur out in frustration. Then again, maybe they only leave the mess outside the tree house … 😉
    Love this.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. “Masked Bandits” indeed!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. When I lived in California the cat door allowed all manner of mayhem from the raccoons. We finally had to close the pet door which put an end to the all-night parties. What did the kitty’s do? Just stood around and watched these large bandits take all their food. (And washing every bit in the water bowl.)


  10. We occasionally happen upon black bears on the streets. Nobody wants to share their jogging solitude with a big Bruin. However, I suppose that a raccoon is equally surprising. However, maybe the wildlife is equally upset at share their time on the streets with us too?

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I only learned recently that there are a lot of raccoons in New York. I always think of them as more of a rural animal, but they are great adapters. I miss seeing animals around like we did in Iowa. There are some squirrels here, but not many.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. parkermccoy says:

    Yeah, it’s easy to get mad at a raccoon’s mess but then when you watch them with their little paws and see them wash their food and eat, it’s so cool that you don’t mind. I mean, we should mind, but we don’t. Raccoons have great power!

    Liked by 1 person

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