Spring has returned. The Earth is like a child that knows poems. ~Rainer Maria Rilke

Thursday, October 25, 2012


The rattlers have gone back into the earth for a few months.We only had two of them visit us this year. One, found behind the house, overstepped its boundaries, put my dogs in harms way and is now in snake heaven.
 The second one was on the road below the house... a small, but angry little guy, crossing in front of my car when I was driving home. Even the small ones carry quite an attitude. It flipped into a coil and wiggled his rattle-less tail at me. I had to laugh. It was so tiny. I let it pass.
The Prospector says I will regret this act of kindness when it comes back next summer bigger and meaner.
But,I couldn't run over it.
So be it.

Today it's beautiful. Sunny, clear and there's a fragrance of Fall in the air. This morning we worked on the hillside below the house cutting bushes and clearing debris from under them. The Prospector and I don't know when to stop and we worked way too long. We will probably regret this tonight.
The rain arrived a few days ago.  RAIN... glorious RAIN,  and it was cold, by California standards.
After a night of rain, I woke up with a desire for hot cereal. So I cooked some Cream of Wheat with some blueberries in it.
One of my favorite "cold weather" breakfasts.

 Then I went for a walk up to the orchard and our well. It's safe to walk into the grass now while it's wet, but I still watch were I'm walking just to be sure that an arrant Rattler hasn't decided to hibernate yet. I wear boots and long pants as well. You can't be too careful.
You never know what lurks in the grass. 

The hillside was glistening with raindrops. 
I took the low road because it is still a better road to walk on and I can see what's coming. The upper road continues up to the top of the hill and on to a distant farm. This was our escape route in last summer's fire.
The road to the right stops at the orchard and burn barrel. There is a turn around at the end.  It's just a utility road for us. Maybe some day we will have a storage barn there, even though it's quite a distance from the house. The road is good and we can drive it with any of our vehicles... even the "other women", (the 38' Chevy) can make it up there.
The sun was trying to break though the clouds. I felt like I was under a dome of  backlit cotton.
The fence gate had rows of raindrops lining the wire.
Many of the barbs on the fence had drops of water dripping from them.
This one had a complete miniature, upside down, reflection of its surroundings.
And, on the fence gate, I found a cocoon. I wonder what wonderful life force is developing inside that amazing little work of art.
I found a tiny bird egg lying on the ground. The ants had found it too.
I walked back toward the house thinking about the long hot summer that I dread so. I thought about the way that each season comes, with unique gifts, and leaves quietly, with the promise of their habitual return.
I will miss the flowers of summer, the vegetables... the smell of dry oaks and Toyon. I will miss sitting in the middle of the Mokelumne River with a gold pan. I will even miss the snakes. Yes... even the snakes.
But...I will not miss summer now... for a while. I was ready for this day... the cool wind, the cloudy sky and the changing leaves crunching under my feet. The berries of the Toyon are darkening and will soon be my outdoor decorations for Christmas.
   This is what I have been waiting for. This is when all fears leave and my soul remembers why we chose to live in this beautiful place.
I think I will make soup tonight...


  1. well thank goodness on the rattlers being gone...love that pic of the grass...and the fence...the little raindrops and cocoons....you found lots of neat visual treasures on on your walk....

    gimme oatmeal too...cream of wheat is not my thing at all....my mom used to make it for us...or make us eat it....ha...

  2. Love, love rain... Love Autumn too. Not so much the rattler snakes (YIKES).

    Enjoy the rain and the change of seasons to cooler weather.


  3. What a wonderful day! I've never thought to add fruit to my cream of wheat. Cooking...she ain't my strong suit ;-).

  4. Hope someone else sees that snake and takes it off the mountain. Isn't the cooler weather the greatest, except I am finding ticks already, think they are coming off the tree here in the driveway, I should go out and put Sevin dust all over that tree and around it. Soup sounds good. Will have to get a couple potatoes to make my favorite corn chowder.

  5. Loved our walk together. Looks like a praying mantis cocoon to me.

  6. you have such a beautiful way of turning an ordinary day into a glorious, colorful journey. That is what it's all about dear, and you've found it <3

  7. I've just been catching up after being away. Love what you are doing with your new camera, the rain drops and the leaf in your previous post.

  8. What a beautiful post. Love seeing the photos with the rain drops. Glad it is cooling off out there and that fall is in the air. Have a blessed day. Madeline

  9. Lovely post. I enjoyed my walk with you and could smell that wonderful after-the-rain-on-the-dried-grass smell. Tina

  10. I particularly like the barbwire shots. I've never run over an animal and never will if I can help it. Once up by Lake Shasta there was this big giant of a snake that took up most of the one lane road. I had to wait until it moved on.

  11. You love in beautiful countryside - just not so sure about the snakes.
    You're getting great pics with your new camera.

  12. Love this post, too. Lovely words. Love the barbed wire droplets.
    I love Fall and Winter, too. Something about cozying up, inside. We have had a fire for the past two nights. Ahhhh.
    xo, Cheryl

  13. Except for the rattlers, this post warmed my heart sweetie :)

    Love the photo of the egg & ants.

    Sure can see why you love it out there! Beautiful...


Please leave a comment here.
I love to hear what you think about my blog. Feel free to speak your mind. Please be honest.., but remember your manners.