For several weeks now we have been watching a sunflower grow out of our strawberry bed. The seed most likely came from our birdfeeder, but wasn't planted on purpose. But we watched as the stalk grew and grew until it was as high as the fence. This week the bud began to form and we watched each morning in anticipation of the day it would open. Well today was the day! At breakfast, we looked out the window and saw the yellow petals beginning to unfurl. Happy day.
What followed was a fairly normal morning routine, take Addison to school, run a few errands and home by 9:20am. As I pulled into the driveway I looked over at our sunflower and did a double take. The head was missing. Not broken or dead, but completely gone. Gnawed off by some fuzzy, tree-dwelling, fluffy-tail having rodent that in some circles passes for cute. I stared slack jawed for several minutes, then pulled the beheaded stalk out of the pot and began stomping around looking for a squirrel to whack. But alas, no squirrel was to be found - they must have seen me coming.
Now, I know many people whose gardens have fallen victim to various small critters. And I've always felt badly for them, in a vague, pat-on-the-shoulder kind of way. I guess you just never know until it happens to you.
So say we all.