Sunday, September 14, 2008

Outside My Window Bear Valley Edition

(Please click on the thumbnail to view the larger image)

I haven't been getting out and about much, except on errands, and what with all the computer confusion, I haven't been taking many photos. This view outside the back of the house never ceases to delight me. I expect I will amass quite a collection depicting this scene.

This morning we watched a coyote this side of that fence as he watched a bicyclist on the trail that follows the edge of our property—it's used mostly by horseback riders. Last week, as I did the kitchen clean-up, I watched a doe graze inches from our back patio. Periodically she looked up to see if I had moved, but she took her time cleaning the area. Betty, the hawk along with a young (we think) falcon keep the sky-view interesting, clouds or not. Then, of course there are all the other birds that dare to risk becoming hawk or falcon lunch along with the ground squirrels and moles.

Yesterday, we stepped outside the front door to check some measurements (plans for fencing pasture) and The Husband spotted, on the door jamb, a Praying Mantis that had definitely been eating his Wheaties. I have never seen one so large—his body was three-and-a-half to four inches long. He was the color of straw—perfect camouflage for all the grass this time of year. Unfortunately, this fellow had encountered a nasty spider web and was crippled. The husband caught him (it wasn't terribly difficult due to the insect's shackles), put him down on the porch, and we went to work cleaning him up. It sounds crazy, but even though he seemed quite panicked when we started, he appeared to calm as we freed him. Perhaps he had only gone into shock, but at any rate he was helpfully still. At one point, he stood as patiently as a well-trained horse waiting for the farrier to do his work—one long spindly leg up high in the air—while The Husband separated the stubborn, sticky strands of the web. Eventually, he was free and we turned him loose in the pasture to take his chances.

Overall. my world is quite different what with new vistas, more critters than ever and a completely different rhythm. This is what I have only experienced in the past as an interlude while on vacation. There are parts of my being that still struggle with the lostness. Still, I know it is only a matter of time.


  1. Anita: what a wonderful rescue story. I hope that that praying mantis went happily along his way and appreciated his new-found freedom. :-)

    That is a lovely shot. Is that a full moon out yonder? I noticed that yesterday was nearly a full moon and that this morning was entirely full. I was going to get out and about and take some pictures, but alas, the thunderheads have appeared.

    Your new vistas look like they will provide you years of intimate photography! Lovely!

  2. I do look forward to ironing out the technical kinks I have been encountering and having some hours to devote to camera workouts. Once I settle in here, I'm confident that I will find plenty of material.

  3. Paul - It's a not quite full moon, but the clouds were so lovely I decided to make do.

    We both got a kick out of rescuing the praying mantis. I, too, hope he lives to avoid many a spider web.


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