Well, as you can see....a new layout to the site is being introduced. It wasn't 'planned'.....but as I was on the AAS I was playing with 'features'.... yes, 'features'. A funny thing about 'features' is that if you are just browsing 'theme layout' for the site and then accidentally press 'save'....it saves. So, as you can see we do have a new layout. Live and Learn....jim
It is my father..... I remember him so well, especially in our last years together. We would sit outside on the porch and talk about life. He would reminisce about his time before he was worn down by life and I; I was not even a glint in his eye. Sometimes now, I tear a bit thinking about his passing but you know, I know.....I just know that his leaving only made me a better father, a better grandpa. That is what happens. Good people, well....they create good people.
If you build it, they will come..... If you build who you are 'inside'.... they will come. Remember that.
Like all of us, I am separate from my relatives with COVID19 but luckily someone has built 'something' although how it works or why is beyond my scope. But I can sit and listen and view and pass the day with my girls and families. Wow.... If you build it, they will come and indeed they did.
Today as I video'd with one set, I was drawn outside as the phone in their hands was picked up and plunked down. I found myself staring at the ceiling. But then my daughter cast the phone on the two grandkids and her husband. All, ....were looking outside at the feeder. My oldest grandson had a camera in hand and was capturing images of the feeder, and yes, the birds.
They built it, ....the birds came.
Now, the shots below from her phone and from 'his camera' are not the best.... but does it matter. The photo's show a family, together....looking at a jay on the feeder and enjoying the moment. A young man, barely 8, ....finding the thrill of a camera in his hands and the photo he produced. And you know, that photo, ...that love of birds was because of me. I talk birds and talk cameras and now there he is, away from his friends...school, life as he knew it. There he is, his younger sister grabbing on to his coat-tails, my daughter and her husband; together they are.
Is this Heaven?....
No it's New Jersey.
New Jersey? I could have sworn it was heaven.
Is there a heaven?
Oh yeah, it's a place where dreams come true.
Maybe this is heaven.
I took a small withdraw from life and visited Belleplain State Forest. My hope wasn't overly grand for you see, I just wanted to catch a glimpse of a waterthrush, perhaps on the off chance that it was playing amongst fallen leaves and dipping within reach of the watered area near the 'triangle'. No, I'm no natural fool to pass that way again, as yes admittedly, I have done brief excursions of that same area multiple times and come up naught, there are some that tell me that they are there. So I ' hunted''....once more.
There are some things that offer a deeper engagement to me more-so than others, and one I can speak to is that of 'walking on a country road'. Much akin to the western cowboy nature bred within me and spoken to 'by seeking solitude and contentment of being in solitude', even in a crowd. This is who I am, and a country road offers a display I can't resist. You see, I sense my connection to the earth as feet meet gravel, or sand, or rocks or pebbles. Well, just the other day I was walking another lone road and found a perfectly-shaped rock to kick. That rock and I played 'kick' for what must have been a thousand feet, just prior to 'it' edging away into the scrub foliage to the side. So walking a country road, brings me to my roots...
Once in southeast Arizona I stumbled over a rocky road, chalked with powdered dust...and found an old sweat house abandoned by previous Tohono's tribe members. I sat upon the lined rocks, circled around ashes of a fire-once, and just listened to the wind blow up the canyon road. Pure country. Just myself, alone, in peace. I simply don't want anyone to enter my space.
Or in Alaska I found myself north of Anchorage towards Denali, and crooked my head down a muddy inclined road and saw a boreal Chickadee dissolve into the pine stands.
Or Forest Service Road #147 in Arkansas.... a desolate place with nay wind to break up any silence, as I chased after high-top trees for the Ivory-Billed Woodpecker.
And yet even in northern Wisconsin I found a country road spotted with cow-manure as left behind to find their way home to the barn. There, just 'off' this country road in boundaries aligned with splashes of stale water was a flock of Harris's Sparrows.
So, Belleplain offered me a chance if not to find the waterthrush, but yet a chance to once more find myself. Though the waterthrush once again escaped my presence, I have a favorite country road in mind when there. Just prior to turning into the main road to Belleplain HQ, I venture further a bit on Route 550. I turn onto Vine Street and come across a narrowness, past a couple of bland abodes and stop at the 'T"....One must now decide a direction, either right or left. I take 'Right.' This allows me to drive down Steelmantown Road and onto MacKay Crossing roads. I get out and walk. I hear rustling behind trees and skip over puddles. I hear the scrunch of wet sand and look for movement along the side. I stop to ponder now and then. I gauge the longness of the shadows spread out over me from that tall tree, blocking my view from the sun. I listen to Cardinals and catch a glimpse of no waterthrush but of blue...of indigo. At last near the bend in the road I startle a Barred Owl who, like me....was looking for that country road void of all comers. It past me in flight and became once more lost in the trees but only 'over there' and not 'here'. Oh well.... We are both once more alone. We are on our country road.