Saturday, November 26, 2022

Sage and Me...


It has been a rainy day here; perfect for putting up the Christmas tree.  But did I do that?  No.  I did what I like doing best on a day like this ~ cleaning and moving stuff around.   Even Sage, the fellow there beside me, now has a new place to hang. He does look happy, I think.  :~)

As I have said here many times before, I love a rainy day.  This is looking toward the east through the sewing room window.  This is the only room in which there is a bit of Christmas beginning to show up. The little tree has been fluffed but there are no decorations yet. (Granny Marigold I got the idea of fluffing my tree from you!  :~)

Millie and I took our usual walk over the hilltop trail this morning before the rain began.  It was pretty much the "same old bench, same old squirrel, same old giant bowl of spaghetti,"* until ........... There he was watching us - he, the same black coyote that, I feel sure, terrorized us on that dark night trek over the hill that I wrote about in my last post. 

I fumbled for my phone to try to get a picture, but by the time I pulled off my gloves and retrieved the phone from my coat pocket, he had disappeared into the woods.  The wolves in this picture from a Google search do, in fact, look a lot like our coyote.  I loved his dark thick coat and his just being there in all his majestic wildness.  I so hope he can dodge those flying bullets for it is deer-hunting season here and many a hunter would like to bag this beauty.  

I haven't done much water coloring in the journal lately, but I did finally finish the brick paver patio in the Shanty Garden.   The final touch was definitely the addition of a heavy clay chiminea that I got for my birthday earlier this month.  I can't wait for our first fire in it.   

* A quote from the cartoon Oswald that I used to watch with my young grandson.

Monday, November 7, 2022

The bird is on the wing (in more ways than one)...


Caught you! (On the Stealth Camera)

Yesterday was one of those days made for exploring, so that's what Millie and I did.  It was, indeed, a day well spent for we know these beautiful days of fall won't last long.

The heavy rains of last week did worlds of good for the pond, so that it actually looked quite lovely in yesterday's sun.  The spring-fed stream of water that feeds the pond seemed lively and quick as it tumbled over rock and root toward its destination.  Millie and I decided to follow the stream backward and search for its source, which we did find after much tearing through briar and bramble.  

  I was reminded of the 1970s mini-series, "In Search for the Source of the Nile," which told of the obsession of European explorers' quest for the headwaters of the famed African River.  


My obsession right now is to finish this little sketching journal before New Year's Day, at which time I plan to go into semi-hibernation mode that I am so looking forward to.

Omar Khayyam (1048-1131)

A Persian polymath, scholar, mathematician, astronomer, philosopher, and poet, widely considered to be one of the most influential thinkers of the Middle Ages.

Omaar Khayyam was born of Khorasani Persian ancestry, in Nishapur in 1048.  Although open to doubt, it has often been assumed that his forebears followed the trade of tent-making, since Khayyam means tentmaker in Arabic. 

As a mathematician, he is most notable for his work on the classification and solution of cubic equations, where he provided geometric solutions by the intersection of conics.  Khayyam also contributed to the understanding of the parallel axiom.  

As an astronomer, he calculated the duration of the solar year. 


I made this sketch from a picture of a marble statue created in his image.  I wasn't sure how he should be dressed, nor in what colors would be appropriate for the time in which he lived, but I thought surely there would have been indigo for dying cloth. I love having him and some of his poetry here in this little book. 

To all of us the thought of heaven is dear-

Why not be sure of it and make it here?

No doubt there is heaven yonder too

But 'tis so far away-

And you are here.



Dead yesterdays and unborn tomorrows, why fret about it, if today be sweet.



To wisely live your life, you don't need to know much.

Just remember two main rules for the beginning:

You better starve than eat whatever

And better be alone, than with whoever.



Come, fill the cup, and in the fire of spring your winter

garment of repentance fling:

the bird of time has but a little way to flutter ~ 

and the bird is on the wing.



Friday, November 4, 2022

There comes a day...

There comes a day every so often that is just not quite long enough - one in which all the pieces just won't quite fit together.  That happened to me a couple of days ago, so that I was left wondering if my 208th consecutive walk over the Hilltop Trail might be the piece that was left out.  

But, as we all know, this life is not for the faint-hearted, and faint-hearted I would not be.   (Webster: faint-hearted ~ lacking courage or resolution, timid)  

I grabbed my stick and flashlight and called my dog.  We were off.  It was quite dark up that old trail through the woods, but thankfully once we reached the top, we had just a bit of moonlight to guide us on.  But wait, I am getting ahead of myself...

We were almost halfway to the top when Millie heard or saw something just the other side of Frank's fence.  She darted under the wire but quickly drew up short, when the most hideous scream, hardly out of the circle of light, filled the night, echoing off every cliff and crevice of that old hillside.  I was chilled to the bone and my every hair must have stood on end.  I thought of turning back but decided to go on. I hoped that Dan would come in his side-by-side to look for me, but he did not.  The screams or cries or yelps, however they could be described, followed us until we were almost to the pond. ( I recorded them on my phone.  I was so sure that Dan would be impressed at how brave I had been, but he seemed unconcerned.  :~)

I spotlighted all the same old favorite places which all of you have seen so many times before.  There's the trail that turns back near the top of the hill.  And further on, the most photographed tree along the way, the old persimmon that grows on a small peninsula that reaches into the pond, underneath which fairies live, I am sure.  I must have a zillion pictures of that tree in every season, but never had I photographed it in the black of night.  

There's the pretty little sassafras tree I keep threatening to steal roots from for making a bit of sassafras tea. It looked beautiful in the moonlight, I thought.

 And finally, there was home.  I did not double back and walk the trail in the opposite direction as I often do.  No, I didn't.  I went inside and locked the door.  Walk #208 just might be the last time "I Go Walking After Midnight," as Patsy Cline once so beautifully sang.  But, oh my goodness, it surely was pretty up there on that old hill with nothing but Millie and me and one old coyote, and.........who knows what else!