It was my son hollering out to me to stop what I was doing in the kitchen and come look. Now, he is a typical 14-year-old who loves to play tricks and tease… something I think he genuinely acquired from his father. So, as I was busy heating up steaming cups of water for hot cups of cocoa for a group of cold wet children, I wasn’t in a hurry to respond to his request.
“MOM! MOM!! You NEED to come look! It’s something BIG Mom!”
Well, his typical way to get attention is to point something out in the room, and when you turn to look at it, he begins to laugh and say “gotcha” … and I’ve told him many times…someday you’re gonna cry wolf, and no one’s gonna listen! But, that doesn’t stop him. Not one bit.
Ok. All right. I come over to where he’s standing and pointing in the dining room window. Everyone else in the room had ignored him too. We’re all quite aware of his techniques, and silly jokes. No one was buying it. But… I’m the Mom. This required my intervention. Frustrated, I walked over to where he was standing.
“Ok. What exactly is it that I’m supposed to be looking at?” I asked, with my hands on my hips.
“Look Mom, it’s coming out… it’s right there!” He pointed.
Oh. Oh. OH WOW! I squealed. “ I see it! You’re not joking.”
He looks at me. Hurt. Like… how could you NOT believe me? Then we both turned back to the sight unfolding in front of our eyes. There was a scurry of activity behind us now. Kids piling up behind me and in front of us, and pushing and shoving…. And then just silence. Shh… I heard one say. It was so magnificent to see this sight, right out our front window.
There just outside our dining room window stepped a large bull moose. Awkward describes him best. Big gangly legs. You could see the big piece of skin hanging down from his head as he bent his head down to maneuver his way out of the forest, stepping over the large branches in his way. He was headed straight for the road. We all stopped breathing for a second as a car approached. When he heard the approaching car, he turned, and went back into the forest. After the car passed, out he came again. He stopped and turned his head and sniffed the air, and really just posed for us. He was missing one of his antlers. He only had the right side of his antlers. (Moose lose their antlers in the winter after rutting season is over.)
Amazing thing was the kids had just been out snowmobiling in the exact place that he had come out of the woods! Perhaps he was following their trail. All these kids had been out having fun with the snowmobile, and sleds, and had been all through the woods across the street in the National Forest traversing all the trails, and finding new runs and bumps and hills to make the ride more exciting. After several hours of fun, they had come tromping into my house expecting steaming cups of hot cocoa, and I was more than happy to oblige. How wonderful it is to come into a warm house after being outside in the cold and hold a steaming cup of warm sugary cocoa in your hands! Oh the joys of winter! And so, here we were enjoying the warmth of hot cocoa in cold hands, and then what a treat on top of it all to see this beautiful wild creature come and pose for us in the midst of it all.
He didn’t stay long. He had more important things to do than wow a group of cold wet children for more than a few minutes. He took off shortly after a large truck came rumbling down the street, and scared him back into the woods. We haven’t seen him since. My son and I walked through the woods the next day hoping to maybe find his missing set of antlers, but we didn’t find them. We did see his tracks all through the forest though. Maybe he’ll come visit us again soon!