Monday, August 28, 2017

Life, clouds and critters

As knowledge increases, wonder deepens.
                                                 Samuel Johnson

Early morning I sat and stared out the window and planned my busy day. The sky was full of clouds. I questioned if our summer was on her way, now that it is almost September. They were not those black ones which had held and shared all that rain. They danced a slow waltz across the sky.

 Memories bubbled up of a child lying on the ground and watching the world go by, one mysterious shape at a time. Life was full of wonder and you always seemed to take the time to study it. Even the little things that may not be noticed by the adults were never overlooked by the young. Have we lost that now that we are adults?

I, for one, would say no, at least today. Oh, do not get me wrong there are big gaps in that wonder, observation and taking the time thing. There are certainly those times when my head is full of life’s challenges and seems so busy. Run run run. Not the run run run of childhood. The running now seems to be mainly of the mind, not the legs. I slowed down today to remember what is important plus get the work done.

When I say I slowed down, it is not exactly what you may think. Those big fluffy white clouds brought with it the heat and no humidity. Yes, the rain has not been here in a few days so My Hero has been cutting hay like crazy, once again. So much so, that I offered to take on some raking duties. As soon as I drove back to the cut field, my nostrils filled with the smell I had missed. Dry hay and not that wet stinky hay. A field surrounded by the bush that always makes me take my time and enjoy the haying while I take in the beauty. This, I knew, would slow me down or at least my mind. Mother Nature would certainly provide those gifts that she likes to share.

Driving slowly, I was instantly surrounded by dragonflies. Every time the rake hit a patch of those darn thistles that have already gone to seed, the seeds flew into the air. That was when the dragonflies danced with them against a back ground of fluffy white clouds in that gorgeous sky. It was a beautiful sight and near impossible for me to get a shot.

A movement in the grass caught my eye. I watched a huge frog hope over the windrow of hay that I had already raked. A red tailed hawk swooped over my head and I wondered if they eat frogs or dragonfly.

This was when I decided to get off the tractor to try and get a shot of the hawk. It is probably a good thing not to shoot your camera and drive. I stepped down and walked behind the tractor. I screamed and almost ran back to the tractor.

There on the hay glaring at me was a huge snake. I am not afraid of them. Well, I am not going to touch it or share close personal space with it, so possibly a bit afraid. He sat on the hay right in front of the rake that I was going to turn it over. If I had not stopped to photograph the hawk, well you know. Lucky snake, I would say. I shot some photos and hoped he moved soon.

I may not be a fan, and I figured he was looking for that frog I passed. Every time he moved, my skin crawled.  When he slithered and his head popped up, his beady little eyes stared at me I wanted to run. I could not rake him up though. Eventually, he moved on. The hawk continued to be out of reach of my camera. I hopped back on the tractor and continued to rake.

Fluffy white clouds, dragonflies, a frog, a snake, a hawk, two turkeys and a feather which I picked up later had made for an incredible day. My Hero did get everything baled that was down, without any rain on it. That is a first for this year.

I guess what I wanted to say was that we can run run run but even while doing that, we should always take the time to wander, wonder and observe. I am sure the child in all of us would like the break.

Bale count 621 and still going.



  1. There's always something fascinating to see if we just keep our eyes open and our minds off ourselves.

  2. "The running now seems to be mainly of the mind, not the legs."

    So true...

    Your blog was the sit down, wander, wonder, and observe I needed today! Thanks,

    (Still screaming about thta snake though!)

  3. I love the smell of freshly cut and raked hay. When I fill the barn with bales of new hay, I have to spend a few minutes just standing in there, inhaling! You have a sharp eye!

  4. Your bale count is very impressive. That is a lot of work. I'm very afraid of snakes, even if I know they can't hurt me! I found one in my bath tub once, just a garden snake, but I was terrified and I took a garbage bag to cover it and brought it out to the woods...I was panicking and weeping the entire time fright!

  5. Hooray for dry baling.
    And for awe and wonder in the natural world.

  6. I love to watch ants, but then I'm old and retired and don't have a lot of hay to bale. So glad you found the time to see both the hawk and the snake, love it.

  7. Lovely post and photos . I am still that kid every day and take as much time as possible outside with camera in hands watching , wondering and enjoying every second of mother natures beauty . I love the smell of the air when haying season is here reminds me of when I was kid on our farm . That Hawk could of had a great meal from both the frog and snake as they eat both , I am not afraid of snakes but seeing one pop up when not expected can be frightening , I haven't seen any snakes about this season which is odd for us here in the valley . Thanks for sharing , have a good week !

  8. I'm so glad you had the time to see all those little things, especially the snake before he saw you. Is he a poisonous one?

    1. Hi River unlike you there are no poisonous snakes in my area.Thank goodness. I know they are plentiful in you neck of the woods.

  9. Reflective . . .
    Clouds seem to bring out the wonder and wander in me as well . . .
    I remember my days of long ago, stretched out on the grass,
    sky/cloud gazing. I can't imagine what I would have done if a snake
    raised its head and slithered through. Oh my!
    Happy some dry weather, haying/raking were in your day!

  10. Your writing is as descriptive as ever, Grace. My mind wandered with the drifting clouds, and I shivered when I read about your encounter with the snake. I'm not afraid of them, either, but like you, I don't really like being so close to them. You are so right when you say that we need to take more time to slow down and observe the world around us--and hope that the snakes move on. Hugs, C

  11. So glad the hay was baled, yay for you two and your dear cow family.

    I would say you had a nice outing there on the farm, may your week be more niceness.


  12. I do like your posts they make me feel like I am there experiencing these things and seeing the animals first hand

  13. Wow you had a productive an interesting day. Don't like snakes at all. It would be nice to be a child again. seniors are not far off.


The mind grows by what it feeds on. J.G. Holland

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