Our lives are not as limited as we think they are; the world is a wonderfully weird place; consensual reality is significantly flawed; no institution can be trusted, but love does work; all things are possible; and we all could be happy and fulfilled if we only had the guts to be truly free and the wisdom to shrink our egos and quit taking ourselves so damn seriously.
~ Tom Robbins
M and I have been traveling again. I think we’ve gone away twice since my last post. Our first trip was a quick up and back to New Jersey for a weekend visit with my father. The second was to Roanoke, Virginia, where M attended a conference and I spent time with a friend while our husbands were busy with said conference. We were there for a week and had a wonderful time. I have lots of photos and will tell you all about it very soon. I’m planning a Monday Meander post but you know what they say about the best laid plans. Hopefully this plan will not go awry.
In the meantime, I’d like to share a little about what is happening here at the ranch. While we were away, the wild things decided to stage a coup and try to take over. I don’t blame them. They were here first. But it will require some work on our part to tame the place once again.
While we were away, the deer nibbled on the hostas near the house. They appear to prefer the flowers at the end of the scapes that shoot out from the leaves. They’ve eaten quite a few so it doesn’t look like we’ll have many flowers this year. The leaves are fine, though, and look quite nice.
A rabbit who must have heard us read the story of Peter Rabbit to the Little Wookie (we record it on a Marco Polo video app for him) decided to move into the vegetable garden. He feasted on the flowers of the pepper plants. Luckily for us, they often make a comeback once the rabbit is shooed from the garden.
My plan for today was to mow the grass which hasn’t been mowed since before we left for Roanoke. That’s well over a week and the lawn is beginning to resemble a meadow which is very pretty but can be an open invitation to the wild things. A lot of rain traveled this way while we were in Virginia, keeping the grass growing at a good clip (so to speak). However. You know what they say about the best laid plans. My plan to mow went awry.
The snakes, particularly the black rat snakes, have been fruitful and multiplied. Perhaps that’s in proportion to the rodent and rabbit population. I’m not sure about the rodents but the rabbits are certainly plentiful this year. Our snakes are looking hale and hearty so they must be eating well.
While walking out to the mailbox yesterday, I encountered a large black rat snake stretched out and sunbathing across the lane. She had an attitude of “none shall pass!” I waited for a little while, listening to the wind, the trees, the grasses, the birds, and the silence of the snake. I finally grew impatient and decided to try noise and movement to frighten her away. She looked at me and her answer was clearly a No. I was unable to scare her off with the stomping of my hard boots on the hard ground, and I was not about to walk around her. Snakes are fast movers and there wasn’t much room to stay out of her way. The rat snake is not venomous but I hear their bites can be painful. Why tempt fate? I gave up and went back later, after the snake was finished with her time in the sun. Yesterday was cool for the month of June and she probably needed to warm up.
Today I walked to the outbuilding where we keep the big mower, and I knocked on the door as I always do to give fair warning to any critters who might be inside. Birds, rodents, and snakes are all possibilities since there are plenty of ways to get inside if you’re a small creature. After knocking, I gave my usual loud speech which goes something like, “Helllooooo! in there! I’m about to come in. Do me a favor and move along so I can get the mower. You can have the place after I leave.”
Well. I opened the large double doors and looked inside. Movement caught my eye. On the floor in one corner I could see the tail of snake sticking out from under a barrel that holds garden implements. On the other side of the barrel, climbing up the wall, was the rest of the snake. It was another black rat snake, of course. The distance between tail and head seemed great to me, especially with the barrel in between. Who knows how much body was being hidden by the barrel?
I left the snake and decided to do the mowing another day. Maybe tomorrow. He seemed to be headed towards the rafters and the idea of starting up the mower with a snake overhead was not appealing to me. Snakes do not have ears, but scientists have discovered that snakes can hear. Sound waves cause vibrations in the snake’s skull that can be “heard” by the snake’s inner ear. We humans hear when sound waves hit our inner ear, too, but we have ears and eardrums. Anyhow, my concern was that starting up the mower in the building (which I’d have to do because there is no other way for me to move it) might startle the snake in the rafters and cause it to drop on my head. The mower frequently (almost always) backfires when I start it. I get startled even though I’m expecting it. Imagine how the snake would feel about a loud bang.
I reckon that’s about it from me and from the Wabi-Sabi Ranch on this warm and breezy Saturday. Thank you for visiting. Let’s go out to the Point to watch the sunset. I haven’t been out there in a while. It will feel good to wade in the water and take a short walk on the beach. Sunset is scheduled for 8:28 PM. I hear the water is warm enough for swimming so wear your suit if you want to go for a dip. You will need water shoes, too. Unfortunately, there’s occasionally broken glass on the beach and in the water. It’s a good place to find sea glass, but not all of the glass has spent enough time being tumbled by the water and sand. Some of it is sharp and you’ll want to protect your feet.
Be good, be kind, be loving. Just Be. 🙂
A few of the 10,000 reasons to be happy: 1,081) This beautiful day. We’ve had a lot of beautiful days lately. We’ve had a lot of rain, too, just to balance things out. 1,082) The Carolina Wren who has been singing his heart out on the deck. His song is beautiful (and he excites and entertains the cats). 1,083) Sourdough bread. Yum. 1,084) Rest days and the luxury to have rest days. All the traveling wore me out. It was nice to spend time with the flowers instead of on the mower. 1,085) Moonlight streaming in the windows sometime in the middle of the night or early morning hours, and being awake to notice it. It was beautiful.