New Year’s Eve will be particularly memorable for one family since a Muskrat, unwittingly, wove itself into the fabric of their lives. Around 2 p.m., a woman was approaching Coderre’s animal feed store on Victoria and Lansdowne when a creature darted in front of her car causing her to hastily brake and stop beside Coderre’s parking entrance. The animal, subsequently identified as a Muskrat, kept trying to cross the road and, because of passing cars, took refuge under the car. He also came up to the driver and latched onto the fur on her boot and she had trouble shaking him off. Why was this Muskrat out at this time of the day when they are normally nocturnal or active at dusk – could he have been out looking for some New Year’s libation?

Traffic started to back up and two elderly gentlemen gallantly took on the role of traffic cops so that the cars could pass the parked vehicle. In the meantime, the harassed Muskrat, according to the spectators, went back under the car and never reappeared. The driver was very apprehensive about continuing to drive the car in case the animal had hidden in the motor or somehow managed to get inside the vehicle. Her husband volunteered to drive the car around a couple of blocks and, on his return, since no Muskrat made its presence known, mystified, the woman drove to South Bolton to fulfill an errand and subsequently returned to her house off Knowlton Road.

That evening, as a way of celebrating the arrival of 2021, the family had a small outdoor fire at the end of their driveway. At 11 p.m., who came out from under the woman’s car but Mr. Muskrat. He seemed scared and retreated under the husband’s truck and only came back out around 11.30 p.m. After hiding again, at 11.50 p.m. he again emerged and began trotting down the road. The couple, optimistically, thought this was the last they would see of him but at midnight he reappeared. The husband tried to chase him off but instead the Muskrat became the aggressor and then retired to the security of the front bumper of the wife’s car. Who knows if the furry critter is still in the bumper but, to date, he has not made a 2021 appearance.