Something Infinitely Healing

“Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts. There is something infinitely healing in the repeated refrains of nature — the assurance that dawn comes after night, and spring after winter.”
Rachel Carson, Silent Spring

A  stroll along Oak Creek while the temperatures are cool, and the tourists linger over breakfast back in the Village. It’s the time of late spring where baby birds are squawking from ledges , coaxed to fly by hovering fussy  parents. Blackberries are in blossom and promise a sharable harvest. The Creek is flowing clear, low, and forcefully. Light crackles and bursts as water flows noisily over rocks.  Hawks are watching. So are tadpoles.  I sit awhile with old friend Sycamores and Cottonwoods. Blue and red dragonflies tease and elude the camera lens. Creek-side is lush, green, and in shadows, while Cathedral Rock sits high to catch the sun. No Breaking News.  to unsettle this creek-side morning.  Most excellent to linger, to embrace this  glimpse of the magic that can be Sedona. Happy to share this morning with you. Peace and Blessings.

Today’s Music: Gordon Lightfoot : Beautiful

This Weekend in Sedona: The Illuminate Film Festival – May 30-June 4.

Signs of Spring

“It’s spring fever.
That is what the name of it is.
And when you’ve got it,
You want—oh,
You don’t quite know what it is
You do want,
But it just fairly
Makes your heart ache,
You want it so!”
― Mark Twain

 

Definitely have a most excellent case of Spring Fever. The pull to be outside embracing the goodness that is Spring. Thought I would share a few favorites from this mornings walk- a -bout. May your weekend be a most excellent one.

Today’s Music: Jerry Garcia & David Crosby- Kids and Dogs

Difficult or Extreme?

“That was the thing about the world:
It wasn’t that things were harder
Than you thought they
Were going to be,
It was that they were hard
In ways that you didn’t expect.”
Lev Grossman, The Magician King

The weather could not be more perfect in the Verde Valley, so we are out the door this weekend to explore one of the many ‘new to us’ trails in the Sedona area. While we were living somewhere else, mountain biking got really popular in Sedona, as well as an increase in  people hiking at all levels of ability.

We were surprised to share Mescal Trail  with lots of fellow hikers and bikers, many of which are in the midst of their metaphysical  Red Rock Sedona Weekend Transformational  Experience, and want/need  to chat about it. This hike really does have some spectacular views and vistas and catching a dose of Red Rock Fever while out and about on Mescal  is understandable. I envision USFS ‘Social Engagement in Progress’ signage soon.It was fun for awhile  to pause and chat, and oh the young people  mountain biking are just delightful, full of vitality, good manners,  and optimism.What could be better for mountain bikers than the Sedona Mountain Bike Festival,  currently in full swing!

All the pauses for conversation left us not covering the distance we desired, we hadn’t brought provisions for the party, and  concerned for how many folks are hiking without water, barefoot, or watching their phone screens and not their next step.

The high desert world can be a harsh and unforgiving environment, while simultaneously providing you an afternoon of gorgeousness and delight. Turned ankles, cactus spines, and  Dehydration surprise,  disrupt,  and can certainly make a Holiday or Saturday Afternoon difficult in unexpected ways, deadly at the extreme.  The Red Rocks can be tricksters, and as the above quote so clearly says:  ‘ hard in ways that you did not expect.’ .., though I would never be able to convince the two barefoot men grinning ear to ear and having ‘The best day of our lives!’

Some of my favorite photos  of the days outing:

Todays Music: Carlos Santana – Smooth

Peace and Blessings To You This Day.

Amid The Noise And Haste

Go placidly amid
The noise and haste,
And remember what peace
There may be in silence.”
Max Ehrman- ‘Desiderata’

 

Peace and Blessings to each and every one.

Today’s Music: Further To Fly – Almaz Yebio Group from the Alblum

“Down To Earth”

Walking With The Universe

“She made broken look beautiful
and strong look invincible.
She walked with the Universe
on her shoulders and made it
look like a pair of wings.”
Ariana Danc

Surprised, thrilled, and optimism restored  in response to The January 21, 2017 Global Women’s March. The strength, beauty, and gracefulness of this beloved  statute in Sorrento Italy speaks to me and for me.

Today’s Ideas for Activism are focused on Literacy.

Local: Literacy Volunteers

US: Reading is Fundamental

Global: International Library Association – Book Donations

Todays Read:  1984 -George Orwell (free online full text edition)

Today’s Music: Aretha Franklin & the Eurythmics -Sisters  Are Doin It For Themselves

Today’s, Just Say No To: Alternative Facts

In response to WordPress Photo Challenges: Graceful

A safe, peaceful,  and most excellent week to everyone.

The Key to Good Eavesdropping

“The key to good eavesdropping is not getting caught.”
Lemony Snicket, The Blank Book

Along with the few dogs walking their people, familiar birds, lizards, a coyote, solitary power walkers, and a regular group of youthful women who jog together on Saturday mornings, I also see  a particular sounder (herd) of collared peccary, during my early dawn walk abouts the neighborhood. 

There are about twelve of the Collared Peccaries, which is average for a group, the smallest a  baby and always running very fast to keep his position just beneath the slower moving mother or nursemaid. They always give me  a wide berth if in the open, or quickly hide if there is cover. The rest are of mix sizes and genders, with one, maybe two males topping sixty pounds. Locally we call them Javelina, but I’ve also heard them referred to as Quenk, Skunk Pig, B’quiro, or Sainos.

They  announce themselves with  a swampy, too deep musk odor.  Both male and female have glands that run the length of their backs, and each member of the herd ritualistically grooms with one another, mixing their individual scents into one,  to create a distinctive stink for their herd.

Today’s Collared Peccaries are quite small compared to their predecessors 25 million years ago who left behind in the Agate Springs Quarry in Nebraska fossilized jaw and teeth that indicated a skull length of over three feet.  These modern urban desert versions have dainty small feet, and fashionable slender legs to support a barrel shape body and big heads.

They can look fairly menacing with razor sharp tusks and a mouth full of teeth  that they snap together loudly when distressed. But my experience for many years has been that any  sudden charging on their part is more likely they have heard and  smelled me and are coming closer in  their very near sighted attempt to see what I am. While I have had many encounters with the Javelina, and have never been shown aggression, I would never consider feeding, touching, or cornering them, always mindful they are best as wild beasts. They grunt, snuffle, bark and woof their way through the neighborhood early to forage on the well maintained irrigated  landscaping or remain ‘outside’ on the Nation Forest Trails where they take big bite-fuls of the toughest prickly pear cactus, seemingly without distress, getting not only food, but moisture during dry periods.

While certainly not fully nocturnal, they do tend to be most active at night, dusk, and dawn, taking their repose in hidden, secluded shady overhangs, ledges, arroyos during the bright heat of the daylight hours.

People have strong, often opposing opinions, ideas, or fears about the Wildlife in the neighborhoods.  I’ve learned to never speak out loud in passing to anyone about seeing the Javelina. Even when the entire  Javelina clan are silently hiding in plain sight, eavesdropping on the unsuspecting gathering  of young women,  finishing off their coffees with some Girl Talk before starting their Saturday morning jog.

“Let’s get going.”  says the pretty brunette dressed in blue.”Something really stinks.”

I wish each and all a safe, calm, and peaceful weekend.

If you are interested in knowing more about the Collared Peccary this is a very interesting read:  Habitat Use by Collared Peccaries in an Urban Environment
Elizabeth S. Bellantoni and Paul R. Krausman
The Southwestern Naturalist
Vol. 38, No. 4 (Dec., 1993), pp. 345-351
Published by: Southwestern Association of Naturalists

DOI: 10.2307/3671613  Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3671613
Page Count: 7
Today’s Music: Dave Edmunds & the Rockpile: Girls Talk

 

Every Aspect of Our LIves

Pontone Italy Photo: JoHanna Massey
Pontone Italy

“There is something
Particularly special
And personal
About the circle
And how its curves
Comfortably rule
Every aspect
Of our lives.”
Kat Lahr, Parallelism Of Cyclicality

In response to WordPress Weekly Photo: Curve

May this weekend be a peaceful one for each and everyone.

Today’s Music: While You See A chance- Steve Winwood