Amanda Pugh :: A Wild Life Refuge ::

Creative Non-Fiction

Southern Legitimacy Statement: I am as Southern as grits, biscuits, and gravy, having the double blessing of being brought into this world in the great state of Georgia (Atlanta to be precise) and having my raising in the Volunteer State of Tennessee. I have been educated here and have worked here for all the years I have been able, and even though I have traveled to other places outside the South (aka Heaven) I know in my Georgia Peach heart that there’s no place like home!

A Wild Life Refuge

It seems lately that my collegiate alma mater has had an influx of wildlife turn up on the grounds of the campus.  Granted, yes, it is a beautiful campus, with an arboretum and 100 year plus old oak trees, lots of sunshine and picturesque old buildings complete with a lovely fountain and chapel in the center of campus, but generally students attend, not the wildlife.

Oh well, guess they gotta go somewhere, and better here where they have lots of room to run and play and raise their young than ending up roadkill on the streets of the neighborhood.

My alma mater has been known for quite a while as home to several generations (by now) of squirrels-with an attitude problem- and they have added greatly to the lore of this institution in its various incarnations (for example, I was squirrel cussed myself one morning on the way to class for daring to share the walkway with one of these little furry demons, and I had a friend who would have one that used her head for acorn target practice every time she sat on the steps of the student union building.)  It was even suggested once (in jest of course) that the squirrels be made the unofficial school mascot so that we could have a cheer for sports events that would allow us to say “Let’s Go Nuts!” (the suggestee shall remain nameless :: coughs :: ) There was even a white squirrel once…I say once, because it made the mistake of running up a tree, and white fur against dark tree bark plus hawk on his lunch break…

Let’s just say that didn’t end well for the squirrel.

So what makes these latest additions such an extraordinary event?


Probably the chicken to start off with.  

In the last few days, there has been a chicken sighting on the hallowed grounds of my beloved alma mater, and it did not involve a crispy flour coating, dipping sauce, or biscuits and gravy.  The young chicken lady liked her surroundings so much, as a gesture of goodwill, she left an egg in the bushes outside the library (found by our provost when told of said feathered resident by one of the groundskeepers).  It is assumed she has a companion, but there have been no rooster sightings as yet.

On to the classroom building-where there were two bats spotted in the basement by the custodian.

And not the kind involving balls either.

Nope, we are talking Dracula’s BFF’s.  Those kind.

Okay maybe not vampire bats, but still…

Sadly none have been spotted in the chapel as yet, but one must assume due to the longtime placement of the chapel on campus, that there may indeed be some “bats in the belfry” as it were.  No telling what may fly in next.

Never a dull moment at my alma mater…