Arthur’s wild barking outside roused me from my slumber. I hopped out of bed and rushed to the windows then out onto the screened porch to see what was the matter. When I couldn’t find him there, I quickly hobbled through the long hallway from our bedroom to the kitchen yelling for Mark. I knew Mark had let Arthur outside, but I wasn’t sure how closely he was watching him or listening to him if he was engrossed in reading the Red’s baseball statistics in the sports page of the newspaper at the kitchen table.
I saw Mark walking around the house outside and knew he was on it. In light of recent revelations, I was worried that Arthur might have finally confronted the groundhogs. I opened the door and a blast of cold air hit me, “Where’s Arthur?” I asked. “He’s right here,” Mark said as he slipped on a patch of ice on the bottom deck step.
“What was he barking at?”
“He was having a stand-off with three deer.”
Good, then. It wasn’t the groundhogs. I’m sure Arthur had those three deer fleeing away with their tails between their legs in short order.
It was likely the mother with her two children that frequent our yard. The two fawns once lured Arthur out of his electric fence which was quite a shocking experience for him. He followed them into the woods, but evidently couldn’t keep up when they ditched him. Mark had to walk bare-footed through the snake and spider-infested ivy to retrieve the frozen-still little dog who wasn’t quite sure what had happened and wasn’t going anywhere. He also wasn’t responding to frantic appeals to “come,” or “chicken” which he never passes up, even though my daughter and I could see him through the trees.
There’s a lot of activity outside this morning.
Two robins were working hard in the garden gathering materials for a nest. Mark and I cleaned out the refuse from last winter, but evidently there is still a bit of this or that hanging around because the last time the robin flew away it’s beak was full of something.
Last year a robin built a nest on an overgrown lilac/honeysuckle mess below our deck. That was kind of nice because Arthur could stick his head out between the railings and keep an eye on them and I could easily photograph the event.
But we uprooted the bushes after the birds flew away and Mark took over the space for his vegetable garden. Probably more on this later . . .
Anyway the robin, and I don’t even know if it is the same robin, is trying to build a nest in the evergreen tree outside our door. Although I think it has given up this attempt. I saw the bits of dried grass, stems or whatever fall off the branch and onto the pile on the ground below. Evidently this bird is something of a slow learner.
Then I saw a black bird dash over to the pile and grab something and fly off and into a hole in a tree in the backyard. I guess creatures in the animal or bird kingdom also know how to make a living off of others.
There was a duck in the trees this morning. I’d never seen a duck in a tree before last spring. I guess it makes sense. I know that they do fly. But somehow seeing a duck in a tree just seems . . .awkward.
I saw a larger bird fly into a broken-off branch of another tree in the woods, and I don’t think it was the owl we usually hear in the morning. So I guess that’s not where the owl lives.
The woods themselves almost seem alive with the constant motion of squirrels running up the tree trunks, running down, scurrying across branches, jumping across limbs, hanging on upside down. It’s like watching an endless sporting event.
Do you feel like you’re playing Where’s Waldo?
The bleeding hearts we planted last year are blooming. Aren’t they pretty? I’ll get a better picture of these later. I love bleeding hearts. I used to have some all white ones at our old house which were stunning. I’ll have to try to find them again this year.
I took pictures from inside my kitchen today out through rather dirty windows. But as you can see from the frost on the railing, it’s darn cold outside. But it’s supposed to warm up today. I’ve been wanting to get outside to photograph all the new life that is budding, unfurling and blooming, but it’s been raining almost non-stop the last few days. Maybe I’ll be able to get outside today if the creek don’t rise.