They really are out to get you (to join their consciousness-raising group)

Last year, we woke up the morning after Halloween to discover our jack-o-lanterns had been smashed in the night. It wasn’t a huge tragedy (un-smashed jack-o-lanterns only last about 48 hours in Tucson before they basically melt with rot) but we were curious who could have done it: the pumpkins were very near our bedroom windows and we thought we would’ve heard any group or person rowdy enough to engage in petty, rowdy vandalism.

The other option: Tucson (and environs) is home to an animal called the javelina, which looks like a wild boar (and is technically a peccary). We live in the middle of town, but in the cooler months they do come down into our neighborhood from the mountains, and they’re known to like to eat pumpkins. I saw some suspicious small footprints in the gravel near the destroyed jack-o-lanterns. So was it teens? Or javelinas? Or teen javelinas?

I believe I have finally solved this mystery, as last night Dave went out grocery shopping and texted me “Javelinas near the house!!” I went to the front door and was surprised to find a javelina not just near the house but right on the porch, in my face, next to the pumpkins. It ran off and didn’t actually do any damage (yet) (although Paul went CRAZY and was very proud of himself) but I feel confident in my conclusion that yes, javelinas destroyed our pumpkins last year. (And frankly are invited back to do it again this year; if they like the taste, why waste them?)

Demolition has been a theme over here. First there was the wonton destruction of my garden (it is…I guess as recovered as it’s going to get). Then construction started on our bathroom, which we’ve been planning for a while to renovate. The walls were taken down to the studs, the shower head and faucets stripped, the old vanity and its un-cleanable mold-developing concrete sink/counter were torn out. (The giant bathtub, though also concrete, remains, and I will protect it with my life.)  So did things remain for a couple of weeks. It’s amazing how much bare wire you can become accustomed to in your bathroom if you simply have no other choice.

I am happy to say that the tile guys are finally here; yesterday they sheetrock-ed, today they’re tiling. Once that’s done, I anticipate a cascade of quick installations and then we will be able to shower inside the house again, and I’ll be able to drink water from the sink at night, like the sink gremlin I am. Paul has been confused by all the coming and going—he doesn’t mind the workers so much, but he was not delighted by the trick-or-treaters, and I think he took a blood oath against the javelinas, if a joyful one. I hope he likes the new bathroom. I thought I’d be sad to see the old one go, but the demo went so fast I really had no time to mourn.

(Though I did have ample opportunity to dreadfully anticipate.)

It now feels mythological at best that the nice tile we chose and the nice vanity we bought will actually go in the bathroom and not just remain a lingering piece of my mind palace, but I am hopeful that this is the case.

May all your renovations, internal or external, also proceed swiftly towards a beautiful conclusion.