Thursday, March 29, 2007
The large crabapple in our front yard bursts into bloom overnight, it seems. And within days, the petals of the begin to drift to the ground in the least little breeze. It becomes a rain of pink petals, which carpet the driveway. So many colors to see. The golden flowers of the forsythia, the pink flowers of the redbud and the peach, and the white of the choke cherries by the barn. And the lilacs are about to bloom as well. Underfoot, purple violets dot the lawn along with grape hyacinth and snow drops, which have escaped the flower bed. We took a walk last night after dinner. It was so nice to walk by our neighbors houses and see the tulips and phlox and other flowers just coming into bloom. Oh yeah, that tall teal blue structure in the background is one of the town water towers.
Saturday, March 24, 2007
All varieties of bird song fill the air, from the monotone whistle of the Field Sparrow, to the wolf call of the Cardinal (and that's exactly what it sounds like) to the tea-kettle tea-kettle song of the Carolina Wren. After the mostly dead silence of winter, the world suddenly seems very much alive and very noisy indeed. And as the birds calm down for the night and go to sleep--except for the owl, of course (I heard one this morning when my eyes flew open at 4 a.m.)-- the spring peepers* wake up at the pond and they serenade all night long until dawn breaks. Shakespeare said it all:
In the spring time, the only pretty ring time
When birds do sing, hey ding a ding, ding;
Sweet lovers love the spring.
*We had one of these little guys as a pet for the winter one year. It came in the house in the late summer (we had about an 1-inch gap at the bottom of the screen door) and I found it in the bathtub. I took it outside and let it go and about an hour later it was back on the porch heading for the house again. So I brought it in and put it shower enclosure, which is made out of redwood and there are some holes in it where knots came out. So the frog stayed there all winter, pretty much sleeping but occasionally waking up and getting on the shower curtain or moving around other the tub. In the spring I put it outside and it went on its merry way
Thursday, March 22, 2007
Saturday, March 17, 2007
Thursday, March 15, 2007
Saturday, March 10, 2007
What immediately leaped into my mind was the banquet in the CS Lewis novel That Hideous Strength that occurs at the end of book. Merlin crashes the party and “Babel” breaks out as various dignitaries are giving their speeches. It starts off as mixed-up sentences and then eventually deteriorates into gibberish. “Jules seemed to be saying that the future density of mankind depended on the implosion of the horses of Nature... Then he thought, Come! That is going too far. Even they must see that you can’t talk about accepting the challenge of the past by throwing down the gauntlet of the future... and then came the sentence: “The surrogates esemplanted in a continual of porous variations.” Well. I’m not quite that bad.... not yet anyway.Oh yeah, I caused something of a disturbance yesterday in the aerobics class when I discovered, much to my delight and surprise, that I have now lost enough weight that can touch my elbow to my knee!!!
Tuesday, March 06, 2007
A stuffed armadillo makes an appearance in John Irving’s book A Prayer for Owen Meany, but the armadillos that visit our place are very much alive. Many people who live in the country take as much pride in their lawns and flower beds as do their counterparts in the city. In recent years, armadillos have moved into the area, and despite the carnage on the highway, their numbers seem to be increasing. And one or two determined armadillo can tear up a lawn or a flower bed looking for worms and grubs in nothing flat. They are really high up there on the Most Hated list, right along with moles, Country folk who have guns shoot them on sight or, in the case of one irate friend who arrived home late at night to find them busy rooting up her freshly planted lawn boarders.... careening across the lawn in the car attempting to run over them. As it happens, we do not take pride in our yard. We do good if we mow the grass once or twice during the growing season, and I have one flower bed planted in perennials and spring bulbs that I have not actually done anything with for about 10 years. Just in the past couple of weeks -- and yes, the grass really is this green despite snow, ice, and freezing temperatures--armadillos have made a pass through our “side yard” and left this pockmarked landscape behind. We didn’t care too much about it. Unlike the special effects wizards who did the movie Holes I can’t capture the scope of how many holes there actually are, but there are at least 40 or 50 in a fairly small area...