Prior to now I did not have a strong opinion on raccoons as they were simply not a part of my suburban life. But now living in the woods on this island, I know two things about raccoons I did not before. Fact #1…they are HUGE. Or at least this one is…I promise you he is 10 times bigger in real life than he appears to be in this photo. You can see his arm is as big as the two-sided bowl we use to feed the wild cat. Fact #2….they are not afraid of ANYTHING. This is the story of my first encounter with this guy two nights ago…

We have an open breezeway that connects our house to our garage. The other night I needed to get something out of the garage so I walked out the side door near our kitchen and closed it behind me. I was about to open the door to the garage when I saw something move out of the corner of my eye. I turned and standing no more than TWO FEET (think about how close that is) away from me in the breezeway was the dude in the photo below. First of all, it’s already dark and creepy living in the woods. Second of all, I was not expecting anything to be lurking outside my door. I literally did a horror-movie worthy, blood-curdling open mouth super long scream. And he did not move. At all. He just stared right at me like “That all you got?” So I screamed again, just as loud. Just “AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH” at the top of my lungs. It was like a game of chicken with me screaming, him staring but nobody moving. My flight reflex finally kicked in and I ran for the door and slammed it behind me. At which point my family FINALLY (seriously, a disturbing lack of reaction time people) came running down the stairs to see what was going on. And they all look through the window of the door and see him right there, still defiantly not moving. And everyone starts banging on the door and yelling and the raccoon is standing there looking at us like we’re in the damn zoo and he’s the spectator. My husband went out there and he finally ran off. But tonight he was back and so I was able to get this photo. Because obviously now I obsessively check both ways outside my door before opening it. Thank you, Rocky Raccoon because I really did need just one more thing in my life to be paranoid about.

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