A couple of days ago, Marilyn had to arise at 2:40 a.m. in order to be at her desk at the Richmond Kmart at 5 a.m. I happened to be awake at the time as she looked out one of our upstairs bedroom windows and exclaimed, “There are eight deer in our side yard!” Now we’ve known for years that deer use our property as a passageway from a nearby woods to a field across Airport Road in rural Rush County from our house, but it’s rare to see that many in the yard at one time. And it’s rare that we would be awake at that hour.
But the episode wasn’t finished yet.
Marilyn said the eight deer were calmly walking, west to east, prior to jumping the field fence across the road. Then, to her surprise, as she continued to watch, a ninth deer came running to catch up to the others!
He did arrive at the fence after the initial eight had already jumped over, but, after some hesitation, he/she made the leap into the field.
Now I’m usually a pretty level-headed fellow who doesn’t believe in fairy tales, but I’m forced to arrive at the following conclusion: The first eight were obviously the “eight tiny reindeer” referenced in the famous Clement Moore poem, “The Night Before Christmas.”
The ninth dear that was lagging behind the rest--a late arrival in other words--had to be Rudolph.
This is a true story. Well, at least most of it.
Best regards and Merry Christmas.