New painting: Skunk!
A Sunday Evening Skunk Story
“According to that online article,” my daughter Aster said matter-of-factly, “our house could smell like this for weeks.”
It all started when we ran out of dental floss.
Or rather, my husband went out of town taking the last roll with him. So my son Isaac ran up to Buck’s, the corner store, for an emergency floss run.
Now, we live in an upper apartment and have not one but three doors between us and the street. One at the top of the stairs, and two at the bottom, making a kind of airlock. Which is a very good thing, because we recently adopted a young coonhound named Melvin. If you know hounds you know why I appreciate this door arrangement. It usually keeps him in.
However, Isaac had only been gone about 45 seconds when here comes Melvin belting down the hallway, snorting and coughing like he’d eaten a ghost pepper.
And then I caught a whiff.
Now, I’ve smelled skunk before, plenty of times, but never like this.
I started towards the stairs. The door at the top was open. I ventured through. So were the ones at the bottom. Both of them.
And there was something funny about the air. It looked…hazy.
All of a sudden it struck. A great chemical cloud rolled up the stairs and punched me in the nose. It smelled like the resulting explosion when a skunk-bearing guided missile hits a petrochemical plant.
Feeling a bit light headed, I ran up the stairs – too late. The cloud had become a choking olfactory tsunami, mercilessly invading the house. You could practically see it rolling through the hallway, crashing into the bedrooms, and lazily lapping into the living room.
Quickly, Aster and I sprang into action. Eyes watering, we got Melvin crated and sprinted through the building, throwing open doors and wrestling with windows. I ran up to the attic and opened the roof hatch. Then it was Melvin’s turn.
Ever give a skunky 70-pound coonhound a baking soda bath? It was lots of fun. Especially when I looked down to see my brand new cell phone that I had forgotten to take out of my pocket lying face down in the bottom of the tub. We fished it out, and dried Melvin off.
He still smells terrible.
My phone turned itself on and proceeded to go into electronic convulsions.
Then Isaac appeared, looking nonplussed.
“Buck’s is out of floss,” he said. “By the way, what’s that awful smell?”
Happy Monday. When a week starts like this, you know it can only get better!
Love & blessings,
P.S. I’ve been doing a LOT of housecleaning lately – both literally and figuratively. We’re talking attic, closets, junk drawers, the works. It often happens when doing any kind of healing work that things get worse for a time before they get radically better. Those negative energies like to put up a fight! In the spirit animal sense, Skunk can actually have some pretty positive meanings. I’ll write about them sometime. But in this case, it feels to me like that ‘ol skunk is just symbolic of releasing all sorts of old stinky stuff. If something like this happens to you, just smile and keep letting the fresh air in!
P.S. Got any good skunk stories? I’d love to hear them!