Lilacs in the ‘hood

Wednesday, May 18, 2021  (7 days before May’s Super “Flower” Moon rises fullest to Earth + an eclipse!)

Yesterday I took one my daily fifteen minute “thoughtful walks” and carried a camera. That turned into a half-hour stroll of soul-filling joy.

From starting that walk, I looked carefully around wanting to spot photograph-worthy details. And that has affected how in future I will seek photo ops. Today returns some of yesterday’s happiness upon reviewing memories recorded by my camera.

First there were wild hares. A couple of young ones live in the neighborhood and occasionally flash into sight. Alone or together becoming very frightened upon sighting a human, and immediately disappearing into heavy brush, not soon again to be spotted.

Yesterday, I happened to be standing absolutely still, to practice the required thoughtfulness, when I spotted two hares about thirty yards away. They were leaping, playing, and coming directly toward me. Upon suddenly recognizing a human, both froze to study the unmoving form before running to hide.

I ever so slowly lifted the camera and took a picture. Both noticed the shutter click but weren’t familiar with the noise so continued staring my way. I held the camera’s position for more pictures. Slowly, they began moving away, unafraid, in no hurry.

Those big-eared jacks, so unlike the soft-appearing wild cottontails, are stringy, muscular, very rapid-hoppers. After years of failing to capture photographically one or more of these guys, now just look.

What was next to catch my attention was an airplane leaf that seemed to be moving on its own down the street. I peered closely, seeing it clenched in the jaws of a tiny ant, determined to move it to a hive. My camera’s lens is designed for distant shots, not close-ups, and produced a too-fuzzy memory. I enjoy recalling that in the fuzziness. In fact, yesterday while walking home, the little ant still was working hard, but not gaining much in winds opposing its efforts.

After walking far enough, I considered sitting and writing the requisite 150 words in my Journal. A flat rock would have provided a good seat, but I became distracted by a discarded rusty old sawblade. Instead of tossing the blade and looking closely at its colors, I wanted to try and duplicate its shades with oil paints. That idea surprised me, and I held onto the blade.

While considering the rocks, I noticed a favorite critter.

On my way back home, I happened to disturb a California Jay that nested near the street. As this one’s mate disappeared into bushes, it swooped to perch atop a nearby spike and keep its eyes on me.

Suddenly, hearing soft cackling from somewhere above, I watched skyward until a Raven came into view. It flew overhead and cackling, before circling and then returning. This time, it lowering in flight and took a very close look at me. I wondered, where’s its nest?, an instant before the Raven simply lifted and took off. For awhile, it remained visible in the distance circling and still cackling softly.

Jays and Ravens are highly intelligent birds. The Jay’s behavior seemed self-explanatory but the Raven’s left me wondering. I still am trying to figure out what might have been on its mind.

There’s so much right out there on the street, to see, experience, enjoy. Today after another thoughtful walk I’ll create 150 words more of Journal entry. The thing is, a walking-writing plan that began as a chore-assignment, daily is growing more into an adventure worth anticipating.

About today’s header photo, the lilacs, it’s a shot from inside my Jeep. Soon afterward, I added another neighborhood sight that has appeal.

Dear Friends: So much beauty and fun, all within so few minutes of a day. Diana

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