Carmel is 20 pounds of cosmopolitan housecat. He came from the streets and row houses of San Francisco. He did not arrive to live here in the Montana countryside until the age of four.
He is not really the outdoor, hunting type.
This morning, for whatever reason, he was right beside me as I stepped out onto the back deck to appraise the day. And that’s when we suddenly came face to…um…beak with a wild turkey. The turkey was standing just off the edge of my open deck. Both the turkey and my 20 pounds of housecat exploded up into the air and then settled back to earth in a somewhat disheveled manner. The three of us froze there for a few seconds—man and housecat fifteen feet from a very big bird.
I think Carmel recognized the turkey was some kind of a bird when the turkey, folded its wings back in and strutted off to a safe distance, clucking. Carmel slunk across the deck and jumped off onto the grass, never taking his eyes off the bird. He was sizing up the situation.
The instant the turkey turned and began moving parallel to us, rather than away, Carmel ran back to hide under the deck.
I laughed. “You know, Carmel, you really are pathetic.”
After Carmel slipped under the deck, I ran and grabbed my camera. Posted is a photograph of the turkey I captured before it wandered off.