Surreal …..It was. I went for a walk at dusk last night, down I Street. No cars. It had just begun to cool off and was surprisingly quiet. Over my right shoulder the moon was at ¾, bright and rising. Looking over my left shoulder the sun, while set, still lit up the horizon and threw a glow on the grassy hill sides. Everything was so simple. Yellow grasses, blue sky (albeit darker shades of blue), the white moon and one twinkling star.
I also noticed the results of the earlier day’s squirrel –icide. Squirrels that tempted fate and lost, left on the side of the road. They are so cute and I am absolutely certain they know there is an afterlife and they are absolutely certain it will be a better life than their current one. No Inferno for the squirrel.
The sadness or at least the curiosity about the squirrel caused me to draw my attention to look specifically at what nature might be offering at that moment to awe me. Sitting on a post was an extremely large hawk. Just as I noticed it, it attempted to fly off and seemed for a moment to be tied to the post it had been sitting on. The rope was about 5 ft. long and pretty thick. Then it wasn’t tied anymore. “The rope” seemed to only be tied to the hawk, not the post. Not a rope. It was a huge snake. Huge. Biggest snake I have ever seen outside of the zoo. It was a National Geographic moment. No I didn’t get a picture. I don’t think of things like that when I am caught stunned.
As I turned the corner it had gotten darker. There were several black shadows off to my left. I couldn’t quiet tell…they definitely weren’t trees. Shining my light toward them I was again, startled to see pairs of shiny red eyes staring back, not moving. Cows. It is still surprising to me to see those eyes, just staring. Do they close their eyes ever? I hadn’t noticed. Is cow tipping real? Really? Think about it. What would it take to push over a 1200lb solid, square wall? Yes, they are on their feet (hooves) but really? How hard would you have to push or how many of you would it take and more importantly how much beer would you have to drink to decide to push over a cow? I walked on.
I have become comfortable with the country life. Walking around at night. Not worried about being eaten by….well…. by a bad thing. I felt light. Like a dancing fairy. I twirled and leapt a few times, dancing like no one was watching, because no one was. As I was coming back around the corner I had a staring contest with a deer, watched many a lizard dart across the road and some small random rodents scurry from one side to the other. I was at one with this country life.
As I was skipping along (Wizard of OZ skipping) a rustling off to the side caused me to shine my light in its direction. Still skipping I caught the big white and black tail, running alongside of me. Not away from me. No warning, no smell, just a fellow skipper, or in his/her case, galloping along, as if we were practicing for a marathon. My first thought? Tomato juice. This is my first thought. There is no way in hell I am getting out of this unscathed. I looked at the skunk and it looked up at me and started to move ahead of me. That would be bad to be behind the little guy so I picked up the skip to a jog and kept up with him (it was a him at this point).
The road is rough and full on pot hole as most of you know. Stumbling along, trying not to go down and become a stinking road rash of a skipper in a dress, I had to suck it up and keep going. Out of the blue the little bastard stopped. Just stopped. I jumped as high as I could to clear the impending disaster and I made it! Ran like hell, didn’t fall down, didn’t fall look back.
So much for being one with nature. As I approached my house I was panting, sweating and had a large quantity of adrenalin in my blood just as my 15 year old son jumped out from behind a bush and growled at me. A Stephen King scream escaped from my mouth. He is still laughing.
There is a silver lining. While I am still getting used to nature I don’t needs Depends, yet.
Here’s to a beautiful summer. Come visit, go for a walk!