So, How Scary Was It?


Boom, boom, BOOOM!!!

Yes, the 4th of July in the good old USA is always exciting, especially for kids, dogs, war vets, and survivors of terrorist attacks.  The big, professional displays are noisy enough, but at least they tend to be far away.  The problem is the surrounding neighbors.  You know, the ones who can’t afford decent cars, can’t afford the upkeep on their homes, but have plenty of cash for stuff like beer, cigarettes and illegal fireworks.

I’m not talking about the sparklers sold by Walmart and other retailers and which are now legal in New York State.  I’m talking about the huge incendiary devices which are sold across the state line in Pennsylvania.  Apparently, the neighbors also have plenty of cash (and time off) to drive there for their purchases.

At any rate, we knew it would be tough because it was last year.  We had discussed going to a hotel for the night but ultimately decided it would be better to keep Puppy Cody in her own, familiar, surroundings with windows shut, AC running, TV on, and us at home with her.  Just in case, we had obtained a bottle of prescription doggie tranquilizers from the vet.

Fortunately, we didn’t need the pills.  Cody spent the evening hiding in various places, at one point wedging herself in the tiny space between my bed and a small dresser next to it.  I thought about taking a photograph of the pathetic sight, but heck, even dogs deserve some respect, right?

But we got through the night and will get through the next week or so until the neighbors run out of firepower.


Allow me to backtrack now.  We took Cody for her walk at the school early in the day on the 4th (hence the photo at the top of this post), and then late in the afternoon we took her out in the yard to do her business, knowing it might well be the last time she’d go out.  Some neighbors had already started shooting off rockets and M80s, but there seemed to be a lull.

As soon as we stepped into the yard, I saw a brown heap near the side fence about halfway back.  Afraid it might be  a dead bird, squirrel or bunny, I decided to investigate before Cody saw it.  Fortunately, I got there first, and it turned out to be a turtle!

Run, Turtle! Run!

(If you click on the photo to make it bigger, you can see its little face and its tail.)

In the two years we’ve lived in the house, I have never seen a turtle in the yard, and this was a big one – at least 6 inches wide.  Perhaps it was trying to flee the fireworks, too?

Or perhaps it was a female who had decided to lay eggs in my yard while the humans were presumably distracted by the noisy events.

In any case, I didn’t want Cody to eat it, so I gingerly picked it up to move it to a safer location.  Never  before have I been eye-to-eye with a turtle, and it gazed at me in total confusion – but did not retract its head and legs, so maybe it knew I was trying to help.  Carefully, I reached over the 4-foot fence next to the pine tree in the church lot next door, figuring it would be safe there – no dogs, no people, shade, and it could get back under the fence once we were gone if it wanted to.

As I moved the critter over the fence, it peed.  I don’t know why that surprised me.  After all, everyone pees (sounds like the title to a toddler’s book, doesn’t it?).  Good thing I was holding it by the sides of its shell so the stream went straight down without hitting me.  Ugh.

I held it as far down the other side of the fence as I could and let go, hoping it wouldn’t land too hard.

The good news is, the shell protected its little body.  The bad news is, it landed on its back.

Did you know that pooper scoopers have uses other than picking up poop?  Fortunately, we rinse ours off after every use, and fortunately my husband has really long arms.  He was able to reach over the fence and flip the turtle back onto its feet.  At which point, we all retired into the house for the rest of the day.

In case you’re wondering, the turtle was gone at 5:30 am today when I took Cody out for her first pee.  Since it was obviously not a young critter, and had already survived for many years, I figured it would manage to escape into a safe place.  I’m feeling better about the whole thing now.

May the rest of the weekend be peaceful for all of us.  TGIF, folks!

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Images by Cordelia’s Mom/TeddyRosalie Studio

This entry was posted in Holidays, Pets, Photography, That's Life and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

31 Responses to So, How Scary Was It?

  1. willowdot21 says:

    So glad you all survived the 4th. I really am impressed at how you saved the Turtle. A joint effort with even hubby involved. Be well and happy.💜💜

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Prior... says:

    We had neighbors light up a few fireworks that were pretty – but only a few went off a
    Sorry you have the neighbors that seem to go to two with the weeklong illegal celebration – and cool rescue story


  3. ladyryl says:

    We had a group of people from the apartments beside us set off their fireworks practiacally outside our back door. Poor Phoenix was quivering mess and was hiding under my feet for hours after they were done. I had to convince her to go out and have a pee before bed by practically hoding her paw… LOL

    Good stuff that you were able to get the turtle to safety and get it back on it’s feet…


  4. Glad Puppy Cody didn’t need the trannies.
    Years ago we found a tortoise in the hedgerow and took it home for the winter. My dad made it comfy in a box with plenty of straw, but come Spring, it was no longer there and dad said it had probably gone home. In hindsight, I think it died and he didn’t want to upset us.


    • You didn’t have any turtle soup during that winter, did you? My dad had my “pet” duck killed and then made soup out of it – and expected me to eat it. How was I supposed to know he bought that duck specifically for the purpose of making soup? It was in the house, I was feeding and playing with it, and as far as I was concerned, it was mine.


      • Oh how awful for you! My grandfather bred rabbits for the table and my Mum wasn’t allowed anywhere near them in case she gave them names. When Hubby was doing pest control, I had no qualms about cooking rabbit, pigeon or pheasant. All I ever asked was that I didn’t see him despatch it in the first place.
        No turtle soup in our house though. Dad wouldn’t have done that to us.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Jane says:

    My little girl Cookie absolutely hates fireworks. She goes into a panic. So she went downstairs in the “basement” last night with her Dadder into his man cave, in his lap with the TV on full blast. fortunately for us, there has been a real push in our neighborhood to stop them. Last year they were every night for two months. Sometimes we could see them, other times they were the kind that cringle and sound like breaking bones. Either way, I hate what it does to my little furkid.


  6. Tippy Gnu says:

    That’s great that you saved the turtle. That’s one thing I loved about living back east, was seeing wild turtles. I’m glad Cody survived the Fourth without too much trauma.


    • I was supremely surprised to see that turtle in my yard as we’re not near any water, but then I looked it up and discovered it was a box turtle that lives on land. Probably it’s been here all along and I just never saw it. Makes me wonder what other kinds of critters are living in those little woody areas next to my yard.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Rivergirl says:

    We are constantly saving turtles about to be run over in traffic and have yet to have one hold his urine. We always get peed on!


  8. dfolstad58 says:

    We have turtles and sometimes i actually have to block traffic and lift them off the roadway and move them to safety. Actually the amount of wildlife makes life interesting here, the precocious deer either in my front or back yard; the eagles and osprey, the fleeting glimpses of raccoons, the cute quail families, early morning coyotes sweeping the streets looking for cats, wandering bears in spring, herons, and innocent turtles


    • Your area sounds wonderful. We actually live in a suburban community but close to the airport, so we do get deer occasionally and, of course, lots of rabbits, squirrels and skunks, occasionally a hawk or some other large bird. But this is the first I’ve seen a turtle in my own backyard. I keep looking for it, but it seems to have gone back to wherever it came from originally.


  9. markbialczak says:

    Being both a dog lover and a Maryland Terrapin, I am glad your story has two happy endings, CM.
    May the neighborhood soon run out of these too-common fireworks, too prevalent in my blocks as well, and the turtle find happy and safe grounds.


    • It’s storming right now, Mark, and I’m very happy to hear thunder instead of fireworks. Hopefully within the next week or so the fireworks will have run their course. (PS – a lady in Dunkirk had to be airlifted to the Erie County Medical Center when her neighbor’s firework display fell over, the fireworks went horizontal instead of vertical and one landed and exploded in her lap! Criminal charges may be pending.)


  10. AmyRose🌹 says:

    Fireworks this year here were not too bad, CM. All survived in our house! As for that turtle, thank you for saving him. He probably peed due to the terror of having this giant picking him up. I’d pee too if a giant picked me up, even if that giant was trying to save me. Good work, you and hubby! Have a grand weekend!! 😉


    • Now, just hold on a minute. I may be a bit overweight, but certainly not a giant! (sorry, Amy, simply couldn’t resist). I’m glad the fireworks weren’t quite as bad this year, for you and for us, but they do seem to be hanging on as always. I’ll be happy when everyone finally runs out of them. (And deepest sympathy to that poor lady in Dunkirk, who had a firework explode in her lap due to her neighbor’s carelessness. I hope that neighbor does get charged.)

      Liked by 1 person

      • AmyRose🌹 says:

        Oh gee, I didn’t hear about that woman, CM. How awful!! Fireworks are dangerous, plain and simple. Yep, fireworks are hanging on here as well. I too will be glad when they are done! LOL@response regarding giant. 😂

        Liked by 1 person

  11. We used to get box tortoises in our yard in New York. I was always trying to turn them into pets and my mother would wait until I had my back turned and release them into the woods. Our Doberman tried to eat one and couldn’t. Tortoise shells are REALLY sturdy.


    • Yeah, this one’s shell seemed pretty hard, but I was till worried about Cody getting to it. After all, she managed to destroy my heavy-duty “contractor” flip phone within about 30 seconds, and that had a really hard shell, too.


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