The morning arctic sun was already a few inches above horizon over the still icy Buffin Bay. Trying, a bit harder each day, to push winter freeze away for a few generous months of summer. Summer to raise pups.

The days are getting longer, and there’s more lemmings this year. Avians are making an reappearance. I took my luck on small coastal birds.

“I can manage!” I thought for the second day. “Find, stalk, and jump!”

I can manage; only if they didn’t have wings of flight. A nuzzle of soggy dirt and snow was my testimony of failure.

I looked up. Scanning my landscape. The bay to the east. Snow, and low rolling hills to the west. A iceberg, for as far as I can observe, floats idly in the far distance. And a patch of bare topsoil reminds of chasing rodents. I look up a hill.

My nose flick at a source upwind. A vixen! My eyes rests hers. Vermilion in colour. Her preemptive summer coat glows in morning sun. Her tail slides back as she pulls herself upright from a fluffy ball.

My paws dug deep into snow, pulling my body forward.

A winter ago, I was rolling, dashing, jumping, bitting occasionally with siblings in my fond puphood.

A winter later, I’m rolling, dashing, jumping, and now nibbling with a vixen.

Three days later, today, we’re digging our den.

My ᑕᑯᑦᓱᒍᓱᑉᐳᖅ is a rather playful fox.

I think she’ll make a great mate.

Me and my mate Photograph copyright 2018 Valerie “double the beautyCC-BY-NC-ND