It had been a good day. It was the last official day of school in Urbana, bringing with it 2 ½ or 3 months of freedom. The grey and rainy morning provided a perfect backdrop for drinking coffee and contemplating our fall tour plans. Then the skies cleared in the afternoon, allowing me to transport some food, by bike, from the store to my home.
Nic showed up around 7:30. Soon after, he started cooking while Sadie and I went out to gather some green onions and cilantro for the evening’s Honey Sesame Spaghetti. I looked up from the onions just in time to see Sadie’s head dip into that hole and come up with a ball of grey fur.
Fight or flight?
I dropped my scissors and dashed toward the house, screaming for Sadie to come with me.
Zack, our live-in vegetable farmer, had discovered the warren of baby bunnies a few days before, nestled within an overgrown patch of arugula. We were playing it cool, hoping Sadie wouldn’t notice them. But alas, our fears had come alive. The little bunny squeal brought me back to a time and place 15 or so years before.
My sister and I huddled together in the middle of the trampoline, screaming for help, while our dog Lizzie (a much larger version of Sadie) ate an entire litter of tiny bunnies. I still remember the squeals and the crunching of bones. Traumatizing.
Fifteen years ago, my mom was the brave one who saved the day. Last week, it was Nic.
“Sadie’s killing the bunnies!” I screeched, as Nic ran out the door.
We discovered that our Sadie is not a particularly skilled hunter. (In fact, she’s more often the hunted than the hunter.) And as far as we know, all the bunnies escaped unscathed. They even had the audacity to return to that same hole a few hours later.
At age 27, I’m still unable to reconcile this whole food chain thing. I shed a few tears, sucked in the air and tried to refrain from having a heart attack, and eventually returned for my cilantro.