When we were looking for houses three years ago, I was not interested in a house with an above ground pool. Not that they're bad, but very often they are these big plastic monstrosities in the middle of an otherwise nice yard that require a ton of maintenance. Alright, yes, I am a pool snob. I was a bit dismayed when we looked out the back window and, despite no mention in the listing, there was an above ground pool. It had a nice enough deck around it and was situated snugly behind the garage, so it was less offensive to me than most. Everything about the house was just what we wanted, though, so we decided that the pool was a minor issue.
At first, I said "let's get rid of this thing" and my husband talked me into keeping it. After enjoying it for the first summer, though, I became somewhat attached to the thing. The next summer, following a poor winterization by two amateurs (the hubby and myself), the pool was in lousy shape. Not one to give in, I refused to drain it and start fresh, so I fought the algae, leaves and critters all summer. Occasionally, I would get in, but generally it was just the thing that caused me enormous amounts of frustration and cost more than a few dollars in chemicals and gear.
Unbelievably, we didn't get rid of it after that summer. We decided to give it one more summer. Big mistake. It was even more trouble than the previous summer and I don't think I ever got in it despite spending countless hours trying to make it beautiful. Towards the end of the summer, it sprung a leak and despite several attempts to patch and resuscitate it, it became obvious that it was a goner. Still, instead of immediately tearing it down, we just left it to sit and collect leaves over the winter.
Come spring, it was FULL of leaves and about 8 inches of water. One warm, sunny afternoon Sophie and I were out touring the back 40 when I glanced into the pool and noticed something furry. Thinking that this must be a clump of leaves, I walked around the pool to get a better look. To my dismay, closer inspection revealed it to be the earthly remains of one unfortunate squirrel. I recoiled but kept my composure. Then I noticed another furry spot, and another, and another. Altogether, there were six sad little squirrels in the pool. I suspect there was just too much water for them to be able to jump out and they drowned. Quel tragique, non?
Of course, I was saddened by this, but didn't really think it foretold ill tidings for other squirrels in our yard. I was wrong. We got rid of the
Now, we haven't put out anything that might poison these little creatures and as far as I can tell neither have any of our neighbors, nor have they had any final visitors. So I'm starting to wonder if squirrels come to our yard to die. Are we the destination for depressed rodents? I mean, how could so many squirrels find their end in our yard in ONE summer? In my whole life, I don't think I've ever seen a dead squirrel (other than the roadkill variety) and now they are EVERYWHERE. What gives?