After eating his breakfast of canned cat food the newly-arrived ambassador of the raccoon king found his voice and began to chat.
He told us his name was Kenny (which rhymes with tenny.) "You can call me Ken, or Red. My real name is unpronouncable by the simple human tongue."
"Follow me," he sang, in words made famous by generals and creek-waders. He beckoned, and led us back to his "burrow" under the bughouse. The rumpled dirt at the entrance we noticed last evening had been smoothed, brushed clear of disturbance and tell-tale coon tracks by......... say, a tree branchlet, and a recycled died-of-natural-old-age squirrel pelt was laid tidily at the threshhold, as a door mat. He whisked his running-shoe-shod feet back and forth over the pelt before he slid under the 2" x 6" that makes up the foundation.
He called from within. "G-e-t D-o-w-n! Take a look!"
On our stomach we lay ourselves between the fiddle ferns just opening and peered through the hole into the darkness. "I would invite you in but you are obviously outside-sized," said the diappeared voice within.
His pitch was high but understandable, and we put the elevated octave to his age. Chosen undoubtedly for his youthful running capacity by the King, his little raccoon testicles had not yet dropped, we conjectured.
The den, once human eyes became accustomed to the dimness, was appointed with furnishings apparently moved in quietly during the night. The last time we saw that space between those floor rafters we nailed in place, it was plain, undecorated, just soon-to-be light-starved grass.
Now, those rafters were like low beams over Kenny's head, and he luxuriated beneath them with plenty of headroom for him and his Lilliputian pair of matched lounge chairs, coon Queen sized bed, all-purpose table - cut-down Louis XIV, doubtlessly culled from the city dump, an oriental prayer-size rug, (HEY! Didn't we have one like that in the garaage?) a cobalt blue glass candle holder and a bouquet of dandelions in a clear vase; those are the things we saw as our squinting eyes swept around the surprising room.
A feng shui appointed room, as it were, that we had given up as a mere off-the-ground support for the bughouse floor planks above it, a space that we (in this case, I) would not see again, most likely, once the final plank was set in built-to-last place back in 1986.
"Wonderful," I exclaimed to the out-of-reach ambassadorial coon, aka: Red. "But I notice you have a double bed?"
"Oh, yes, I have a woman!"
(And WHAT a woman! Wrong about the testes. There'll be more..........)