A squirrel is just a rat with a cuter outfit! (Sarah Jessica Parker)
We don’t have squirrels here in Australia. Nor did we have them in New Zealand. The animal that comes closest, for me, is the possum. Australia protects possums. I have no idea why – perhaps because they are native to here. In New Zealand, they are considered vermin. Some enterprising Kiwis make hats and gloves out of their fur. It’s very snuggly.
My first encounter with squirrels was as a teenager. My family had travelled to Frankfurt for a white Christmas with my German Grandmother. My wonderful Omi would feed the birds and the squirrels in feeders outside the large picture window in front of her garden. The squirrels would appear from the eaves and shamelessly watch us from the safety of the other side of the glass. They fascinated me. I spent ages looking out for them. I have had a soft spot for them ever since.
O sweet September, they first breezes bring dry leaf’s rustle and the squirrel’s laughter, the cool fresh air whence health and vigour spring and promise of exceeding joy hereafter. (George Arnold)
I suspect Londoners laugh at tourists taking happy snaps of the squirrels while wandering through Hyde Park, but that didn’t matter to me as LM and I encountered this little guy during one of walks…