Checking out the neighborhood (8)

(Tall ironweed drying in a field.)

It’s day 8 of the great outdoor adventure.  Hard to believe it’s been a full week already.  Time flies, so they say, when you’re having fun.  I have a feeling it won’t go quite this fast in the depths of winter.

I decided to venture off the property and out into the neighborhood for today’s walk.  It’s another foggy morning here in the Bogs.  The air is chilly and damp with a hint of woodsmoke scenting it.  I don’t know if folks are using their fireplaces already or if it’s the leftover fragrance from a bonfire.  We have our bonfire pile set up and ready to go.  It’s just a matter of finding a good evening for it.

(Three crows.)

Wherever crows are, there is magic.  They are symbols of creation and spiritual strength.  They remind us to look for opportunities to create and manifest the magic of life.  They are messengers calling to us about the creation and magic that is alive within our world everyday and available to us.  ~ Ted Andrews, Animal Speak

I heard the three crows before I saw them.  Three is said to represent creativity, birth, and the mystical.  It was the kind of foggy, misty morning in which the word mystical might easily be applied.

(One of the neighborhood barns.)

It’s likely to stay cloudy today.  One of the local weatherpeople on television said we would have “veiled sunshine.”  I’m not sure we’ll even get that much although I did see a light in the clouds where the sun should be.  We’re getting some of the clouds from the remnants of Nicole that are causing all the heavy rains (in the form of a nor’easter) out east.

(Cornfield in the mist.)

It was fairly quiet out there this morning.  Only a few cars went by as I walked down the road.  I do wish we had wider berms (shoulders) as some drivers tend to want to swerve towards me rather than away.  I always wear bright, bright colors when I walk the neighborhood.  If someone should hit me with their car, they won’t have the excuse that they didn’t see me.

(Weeds in the corn.)

I didn’t see any of the farmers out and about.  The neighbor ladies who usually spend most of their days gardening and mowing their lawns weren’t out either.  Just a guy riding his bicycle, swerving back and forth on the road.  And the crows, of course, as well as a pair of doves were out there keeping me company.

(Variegated leaves.)

The colorful sunsets have returned.  Last night’s was so beautiful that I almost forgot to grab my camera.  M and I stood out on the balcony and watched for a while as the sky turned a variety of colors.

Pretty, isn’t it?


A visitor from the pond

While M and I were enjoying our lunch today, a turtle came wandering up from the pond.  Sense of scale is hard to convey when you don’t want to get too close, but this was a grandmother or grandfather turtle, well sized with what looks like a lot of life behind her/him.

The turtles in this area are migrating now.  Unfortunately, some don’t make it across the roadways.  This snapper had made her way up the hill from the pond.  For a few minutes we worried that she was headed for the trench.  Since we poured the concrete on Sunday, we’ve had some rainwater settle in the trench along with mud.  M — while bailing out the water — found four frogs trying to take up residence in there.  Removing the frogs from the trench was no big deal.  Removing this giant of a snapper would not have been so easy.

In his book Animal Speak, Ted Andrews writes this about turtles:

Turtles remind us that the way to heaven is through the earth.  In Mother Earth is all that we need.  She will care for us, protect us, and nurture us, as long as we do the same for her.  For that to happen, we must slow down and heighten our sensibilities.  We must see the connection to all things.  Just as the turtle cannot separate itself from its shell, neither can we separate ourselves from what we do to the Earth.

A couple of weeks ago I read this blog post at Grace-full Thoughts which made me ponder my own role in the BP oil spill in terms of how I use petroleum and petroleum products.

M and I both try to conserve energy, live in a “green” way, and reduce any negative impact we may have on the earth.  Among other things, we compost, plant trees, recycle and/or reuse, consolidate errands when we have to drive to the store, and have begun to take more and more trips that don’t involve a car to get around.  Still, I think we could do better.  Having the turtle join us for lunch this afternoon reminded me of that.

I hope it made it safely to wherever it was headed.  It came close to the trench but then veered off to the right and continued uphill, disappearing into the grass.  There are quite a few ponds in this area where it can make a new home.  I’d like to think the old Grandmother Turtle is settling in now, enjoying the change of scenery and looking for the best feeding spots.

(Weekend sunset.)