This beautiful black cat popped out of the brush during one of our post-lunch walks out to the dykes and boy, did it (she? I think) have a lot to say. It was really cold that day so I hope she had a safe home to return to.
*Autumn colours persisting
The woods were still pretty yellow for November 22.
*Getting caught in a surprise snow squall
Thinking the overcast skies were harmless clouds, I suggested we push our Wednesday walk further (and further and further) and was rewarded with driving snow and bitter winds the whole way back. Still kind of fun, though.
In the photo above you can see a lump near the top of the middle tree, which we assumed was a large bald eagle because we’ve seen dozens of them this year. Surprise – it was two eagles, and the chittering they did to each other when a smaller bird/possible lunch innocently flew by was amazing to hear.
*A Maritime garter snake chillin’ on a sewer grate
While chatting with my mother in her driveway last week, two excited boys rode up on bikes to tell us they had found! a! snake! After reassuring them this little guy was not dangerous and was surely more afraid of us than we should be of him and that no, they should not ride over him with their bikes, we returned to the driveway and those little buggers got a stick and pushed the snake into the sewer. Sigh.
*My mother’s hanging basket of nasturtiums, still going strong and feeding pollinators
*A giant crate of lettuce at the farm
Who’s that weirdo taking pictures of lettuce? That weirdo is me. But I mean, come on, look at all those shades of green.
*The leaves starting to turn in the backyard
I’m not sure why our trees are always behind all the others around here, but it’s starting to get pretty out there.
It’s been a hectic couple of weeks around here, what with medical appointments, dental appointments, a massive closet switcheroo (why do I always choose the worst times for these projects?), ripping apart the rickety front steps, and Anna moving out of her student apartment in the city.
*Two new, ridiculously photogenic grandcats
Their names are Nadja and Simon the Devious.
*Miss Madeleine’s tolerance of the new arrivals
*Cosmos, still giving it their all in mid-October
*One very confused lupin
*Storm clouds making everything look dramatic
*A most intriguing caterpillar
Research indicates this is the caterpillar of the hyles gallii, aka bedstraw hawk-moth, aka galium sphinx moth. The red horn on his rear end isn’t dangerous, apparently, but it certainly discourages one from touching it. All I know is he was big (about the size of my ring finger) and moved fast.
I forgot to take the camera to our farm pickup this week, which figures, because there were giant heaps of bright orange squash, glowing red apples and knobbly yellow gourds sitting there begging to be photographed. Ah well.
*An extremely foggy sunset
We don’t typically get a lot of fog in this part of Nova Scotia so this was very exciting. Yes, I am aware that my idea of exciting is not most people’s idea of exciting.
All that mist in the air highlighted the yard’s four million spiderwebs and they’re pretty, but best of all is seeing a spiderweb without walking into it first, like usual.
*The Merlin bird identification app
Produced by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, this app can identify your photos of unknown birds or, better yet, listen to bird calls and songs and identify them that way. I knew our yard was a bird hotspot, but the Sound ID indicates there are probably four or five times as many birds hanging around out there that I never see. Even my mother let me add this app – her very first – to her phone and she is also utterly addicted.
Unlike some fairly tame and sociable chipmunks, the ones living in our shed have zero interest in interacting with us. Imagine our mutual surprise, then, when this little guy popped out of the wisteria only to find one of the big dumb humans (me) watching her stupid Merlin app (what else?) on a quiet, foggy Saturday morning. I quickly snapped this bad photo with my phone right before he retreated to a safe distance and shrieked at me for five minutes straight.
*Telling our friends exactly what we think of them
Less than Angels by Barbara Pym was okay, but not my favourite Pym. I did LOL at this part, though:
“Things were said on both sides which might be regretted afterwards, and both felt the perverse satisfaction which is to be got from saying things of precisely that kind. It is very seldom that we can tell our friends exactly what we think of them; for some the occasion never presents itself, and they are perhaps the poorer for not having experienced the exultation of flinging the buried resentment and the usually irrelevant insult at a dear friend.”
*’Women decorating porcelain at Den Kgl Porcelansfabrik’ (1895) by Emma Meyer