Yesterday, I took a pleasant solo drive from Goose Creek over to the Blue Ridge Parkway. Now that the leaf-peepers have no leaves to peep, I had the long, high road to myself for 35 miles, all the way to Fancy Gap. And for the first time in thirty years, I wound down the mountain the old way--on Route 52--to the bottom of the Appalachian Escarpment, to the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains and the piedmont of North Carolina. My destination: Mt. Airy, a town that reared … Continue Reading ››
I look at the exotic images from far away places taken on great adventures by photographers who post their works now so easily on the web for all to see. There are breathtaking panoramas in mind-numbingly beautiful light; local people in bright dress engaged in unguessable celebration or worship; and amazing animals in lush rainforest or stark desert places I cannot imagine.
Then I look at my monthly photo-archives of very ordinary local insects, pasture flowers, fall leaves, and always: the barn. It is certainly the most photographed structure in … Continue Reading ››
"I can't remember what I was doing this time last week, let alone this time last year" Ann often confesses when I slip into one of my time-traveling reveries. The past is the foundation for today, and every day is the anniversary of another brick and mortar time worth building into the present. The weblog certainly helps in this time travel, but all you have to do is pay attention to your senses to reconnect with last year this time, or the year before, or three decades … Continue Reading ››
A gray fox squirrel, a pretty thing seen so close, bore the same markings as the common gray squirrel but with a whiter vent and half again as large. This one sported the characteristic tail longer than the body, it's unmoving spiny shaft conspicuous, wet now with saliva. The pasture grass had concealed the animal as it harvested walnuts from the tree just up the bank from the creek. But the same grass made it hard to see an approaching predator, and then once pursued, impossible to run at full speed to safety.
I don't think Tsuga set out … Continue Reading ››
Okay, I’m trying to blog outside the box. Or actually inside the box of Blogjet as opposed to freeform in NoteTab Pro’s html editing mode that I’ve been using now for four years plus.
First, let me say how great it is to feel like blogging is a two-way enterprise once again. And then to thank you folks for hanging with me through so many twists and turns to get here, a place I trust will be FFF’s home for some time to come.
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It fascinates me that a leaf knows when its time has come to fall. Perhaps some combination of day length and temperature gives the signal. But maybe it’s just the good taste to abort, an inner sensitivity to the needs of the whole that gives its parent tree a chance to hibernate with its blood gone underground for the winter, safe from freezing. Whatever the signal for the moment of leaf launch, I’m glad they don’t all get the same idea on the same day.
First, … Continue Reading ››