Staying up a little late is a lot easier than getting up a lot early. So, about 12 AM this morning, I headed out to the pond to get a glimpse at the Orionid meteor shower. I parked my carcass in a chair right where the culvert separates the upper and lower pond.
About 2 or 3 minutes passes quietly as I was staring up at the sky and listening to "the sounds of silence", when all of a sudden I nearly jumped out of my skin. The slap of a beaver's tail about 20 feet from where I was sitting, took me by surprise.
Having announced his displeasure at my midnight he moved to the other side of the dam and began patrolling up and down its length slapping his tail about once each circuit.
Having adjusted to the initial surprise, I went back to star gazing. Over the next 15 minutes I counted 5 meteors and 22 beaver tail slaps.