human, being

I work in the wilderness
January 7, 2009, 1:35 pm
Filed under: life

My office is in an early 20th century former military hospital on the edge of the prairie that Denver encroaches, more and more, every day. The back 40 is relatively wild, with an undeveloped open space that will someday be the largest biotechnology park in the United States. But before they move in the high-tech, they’ll have to move out the wild things.

This campus is known for its obese squirrels and ferral cats. The ubiquitous garbage cans and dumpsters make it vermin heaven. I’ve even rolled over a mouse with my office chair (and subsequently put my foot–bare from having kicked my shoes off under my desk–right on top of the little carcass). As I’ve hoofed it the three blocks to my parking garage, I’ve seen foxes and even a coyote. They must feed on the squirrels, ferral cats and mice.

But the most beautiful creatures I’ve seen here were just spied from my office window: a small herd of white-tailed deer. A moment ago, about six buck and four does were cavorting in a green space in front of my building. All work came to a stop on my floor, and the construction workers building a “pedestrian promenade” across the campus leaned on their shovels to watch the unexpected beauty of these animals. I hurried downstairs with the work D40x to try to get a photo, but darn the slow elevator and the people, who are stupid, and don’t understand that if you approach wild animals they will run off. They spoiled the scene for the rest of us.

Before the Army built its medical base here after World War I, the whole area was a tree farm. Now it’s a huge medical campus, home to a large university, two major hospitals and more than 10,000 cars. After seeing this lovely sight, I’m glad the campus speed limit is 15 mph. Better for sightseeing, my deer.


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