Monday, February 25, 2008
It's true. People who own dogs tend to walk more and are overall healthier and happier than people without them. We also smell better, have thicker hair, and make all our own clothing. Chet has been fixing me with stares lately, stares that say, "We haven't been out in WEEKS. I am losing my mind." Well, I am, too, but I'm smashed flat trying to get ready for two major trips, back-to-back, and the weather STINKS. Our woodcocks should have arrived February 17 and begun twittering and peenting in the meadow. Not a single sign of them, and I listen every evening. I hope they're all in South Carolina, biding their time. My poor daffodils are growing taller every day, perhaps party to some inside information about the next ten days that eludes Intellicast Weather. I think they're insane to poke their heads aboveground. I am heartily tired of winter.
On those rare, rare sunnyish days I HAVE to get out and walk, and Chet is the guy I want by my side. His exuberance buoys mine, and he always makes me laugh. I find myself saying, "You little goofball!" again and again. Chet lives to be called a little goofball.
I sat down to rest and found a twisted branch that I lobbed toward Baker as he snuffled around in the grass. There ensued a game of Fetch that Chet enjoyed because he likes a challenge--hauling a twisty old branch that kept rotating in his jaws and getting hung up on things. Good boy, Chetty.
My camera's AV (Ai Servo) setting is good for taking pictures of an object moving toward me, in this case my pet dog. It adjusts focus continually as he approaches. This is about as sophisticated a photography tip as you'll get from me, and I got it from Shila, who takes photography classes and has taught me most of what I know about my camera. You see, she reads the manual instead of sticking it away in a drawer overflowing with varranties and water heater assembly instructions and lost computer passwords and old check stubs.
My usual brand of photography tip goes likes this: If you want good pictures of your dog, lie down on the ground. Or: If you get mayonnaise on the lens, you might as well lick it off.
Chet and I found some cool stuff on this walk, including what I believe to be bobcat scat. I say that because cat scat tends to be broken into very short segments, as anyone who cleans Fluffy's litterbox can tell you. As you can see, this is not composed of digested Friskies. It's all fur, and there is a gorgeous little bit of shrew maxilla in there, too.
The whole thing actually looks like a skull to me, complete with eye socket, and teeth in approximately the right place. See, you can find beauty and verisimilitude in catdoody, if you look closely enough.
I took this acorn photo on December 21. It was just sending its root out. Now, the same acorn is firmly rooted in the ground. It hopes to be a chestnut oak someday, but it's growing in a gas line cut. I'm afraid its hopes will be dashed.
A plant with more realistic aspirations: fernlike moss.I'll finish the walk with Chet tomorrow. My life is in a Bassomatic blender at the moment and I have spent almost all day canning posts so you will not be without some trace of Zick for the next two weeks. I could just leave you hanging, but it doesn't seem fair somehow to either of us. Dependability is about 80% of successful blogging, in my opinion. Originality and quality are in there somewhere, too.