Three Squirrels ran single file down Pine tree, plowing through the Snow that was stuck to the tree trunk by last night's storm. They turned at the bottom and ran back up, then down again. On this second decent the lead Squirrel veered sharply Eastward, onto a branch. I noticed that the end of the branch hung alone in the air, not close to any other trees. I watched curiously, wondering what would happen when the Squirrels reached the end of the branch with nowhere else to go. What happened next stunned me.
When the lead Squirrel reached the end of the branch, she, without hesitation, flipped under the branch and ran, full speed and upside down, under the others and back to the main trunk. From there she ran down to ground. As I considered what I was seeing, and the pronouns I was assigning to the characters in the scene, it occurred to me that I didn't actually know if the lead Squirrel was female. Than I wondered how long it might take for me to become familiar enough with my Squirrel cousins to be able to discern their sex just by looking at them.
Right now in my life all Squirrels look alike, but I know that this is an illusion created by my lack of familiarity. I don't know Squirrels well enough. That's why I can't recognize their uniquenesses. My strangerness blends them all together into a single group of indistinguishable beings. Knowing this is an effect of my perception gets me wondering what else I am missing as I sit in this moment. Looking around, what can I not see because I have not taken the time to become more familiar with what is right in front of me?