One particularly cold winter squirrels decided to nest in my window. They would crawl behind the cage with cardboard and leaves and plastic bags. They made more room by chewing through my screen. At first they were afraid of me, and would be suddenly still when they’d see me watching. She was particularly invested, she had a fondness for animals despite eating them. She wanted to make pets of their coming children, I insisted that was self-serving and potentially irresponsible; She settled for feeding them on the rare days that I slept in.
One winter morning I woke to stretch. It had been after a series of days that I had slept in way past a reasonable hour, clocking 10 to 12 hours of sleep a night. This was the first morning in a row of few that I forced myself up early- an attempt to pull my life together and win. So I would stretch and try and meditate a little, five minutes was the goal. I watched the furry couple in the window.
One, the female I believe, was nested deep, only her eyes and little ears poking out.
Then Two, the second squirrel came through the edge of the cage, and forgive me for not being able to tell them apart, sexing squirrels is not a talent of mine. I was expecting a fight; this had become common- invading squirrels looking for a sweet nest like the ones these had built.
There was no fight; this was Cornelius who had come. We named him Cornelius. I watched her stretch out a tiny claw, opening her little fingers, he came to her and she took his handsome head in her hand and pulled him into her nest for embrace- some cuddle time. Nice Cornelius.