Friday, April 16, 2010

The Nature of Things

Friday has arrived and yet today it brings with it none of the usual sense of relief. Mike will be home, but I don't expect much backup because he has a final assignment due in his course so he will be busy with that. It's a real bummer because the weather is going to be beautiful and I was hoping he might get some work done outside, or in the basement. I sound like a real slave driver, but he actually wants to do the work too.

Today is also a beautiful day. I don't remember now, but it may well be the first one we've had all week. The sun is shining, and in our little clearing there is barely a breeze today. This morning I looked out our patio doors in the kitchen and saw something move on the ridge. I thought it was probably Radar, but I looked more carefully and I saw the back of a coyote gliding along the top of the ridge through the trees. I ran across to the front door and quietly stepped outside, hoping it would come that way where I could see it. I watched the ridge, and sure enough, there he was. He walked along the top and came right out of the trees where I could see him completely. I say "he" because he was quite large. I almost questioned whether he could be a wolf. Actually, upon looking online for photo comparisons between the two, I am not really sure. I hope it was a coyote. I hope it was not a hybrid. Those are apparently popping out of the woodwork these days and my in-laws have seen some around there place, which is not far from here. There was a girl in her early 20s (I think) killed by a pack of those recently on the east coast. Anyway, there was a second one following closely behind the first, but this one was smaller. I would guess it was the female. I wondered if maybe there were babies around somewhere. Well, duh. Of course there are. Our bush is full of coyotes, so there are obviously young ones around in the spring. That would be something to see. I have seen plenty of fox kits in my lifetime, but never any coyote pups.

Anyway, I felt like I was on a wilderness retreat somewhere. It was so quiet and peaceful outside. I was in bare feet and even though the air was chilly, the sun was so warm I was not even bothered by it. I stood there watching them disappear into the trees again and watching to catch another glimpse, until I heard Cody come up the stairs and start calling me. (I had left the door open while I stood out on the deck.) Sigh. So much for the quiet.

The boys are in the basement right now. Micah is in his crib, but he keeps crying out now and again, so I know they are bothering him with their noise. I am bothered by it today too. I am like an animal with rabies who becomes very agitated with every noise. I guess that's a silly thing to say, but this week there has been so much whining going on in this house I feel like I am going to lose it.

Yesterday was a productive day for me. In the wake of having handed in my latest assignment I worked my butt off to catch up on all my housework. I did a good job of it too. Today I seem to have lost that energy. In fact, I could fall asleep right now very easily. Maybe that's because I was up at 1:30 a.m. with Micah.

I was trying to talk to my mom on the phone earlier and the boys were acting obnoxious. For any of you without children, this is just a fact of life. If mom or dad are on the phone, kids automatically act as obnoxious as possible. I went in my room and shut the door, and after a bit they got quiet. I went out again and there they both were. They were on Cody's bed, underneath the fitted sheet. I rolled my eyes and ignored them. I knew they were eating, but I just didn't want to know about it. I found out soon enough. Guess what they had? Fiber One. You know, the cereal. Basically, they might as well have taken laxatives. I sure do look forward to the rest of my day now. Yikes.

Oh, and I didn't post in here yesterday, but you'll never guess what the highlight of my day was. Okay, I'll just tell you. The turkey vultures are back! Haha. Anyone who knows me knows what I am talking about here. When we bought this land it was full of junk, and that is a huge understatement. We are talking about multiple old buildings full to the brim of junk, plus junk all over the place and throughout the bush too. Anyway, we demolished one building where our house now stands, but there was a second building beside our house, right outside our master bedroom windows. I used to jokingly refer to it as the mother-in-law suite, not as a reference to my mother-in-law or my own mother, but because it looked like a second, smaller house right beside the main house that was here before. In truth, it was a very creepy place. The building was old and rotten, and there was this ugly green shingled roof right across from our bedroom. The siding was kind of a peachy pink color, and the other half was just barn-board. There was a door, again, right outside our bedroom window, that used to just swing open and closed at night and it made this classic creaking sound. It was just like something out of a movie. Of course, we kind of ran with our imaginations because there was also a deep freeze in there and it was not empty. It had something in it, and my brother-in-law once joked that it was a body. I'm not even sure he was entirely joking. You'd have to know some of the other stuff we found in there to appreciate just how creepy this place was.

Anyway, the best (worst) part about this building was that it seemed to attract turkey vultures. If you don't know what a turkey vulture is, I recommend googling it. They are very large birds, completely black except for a bald red head. They have a six foot wingspan, and they eat carrion. They can actually vomit their food at you, and considering one of their favorite delicacies seems to be dead skunks, the whole projectile vomit situation is one you would want to avoid. I would know. Before we built here we actually found one of these vultures trapped under some kind of chicken wire, and it did just that. The smell nearly made me puke. Fortunately, it didn't hit any of us. I could gag just remembering it. Blech! One of the unique features of these birds is that they have a sense of smell. Most birds do not, from what I understand, but seeing these ones only eat things that are already dead, I guess they rely on scent to find their food rather than on sight. Well, these vultures used to sit on top of the mother-in-law suite, which I renamed "the turkey shed" in their honor, and also because the mothers-in-law in our life were somewhat put off by the original name. Hehe. There was one time I looked out my bedroom window and saw three of these beasts sitting on the roof only about 15 feet away from me. That only added to our sense of dread at what might be hidden in the deep freeze, or anywhere else in that building, for that matter.

Wow, this is turning into a long story. Okay, so the good news is, that building has been destroyed and is now gone. Phew. That was a relief, getting rid of it. But I got kind of attached to our homely friends, so I was somewhat sad when they did not stick around. The cool thing is, every year they seem to come back and check out their old haunt, and yesterday they did just that. Only three of them, that time, but often they come in groups of six or seven. I know they are ugly birds, but when you watch them soar they can be quite beautiful. They are very graceful in the air and they can soar for upwards of six hours without ever flapping their wings. I think that's pretty cool. I have had them fly over close enough to ear their wings flapping and I just think they're kind of neat. I guess it brings back memories of when we first moved here, a mere four years ago. I am glad our yard doesn't look like a dump anymore though. I'm also glad that freezer is gone!

So now the boys have invaded my quiet time, and I must go make some lunch. I apologize for the length of this post. I just went on a babbling streak, I guess. I may or may not post over the weekend. Bye for now.

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