Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Newport News Park (1/27/2015)

I have not been blogging very much this month.  Probably because I am busy and with the winter in full swing, we are kind of home bound.  But today I had to share something.  It snowed overnight, and if we are lucky we get one or two snow days each year.

Of course I needed to go for a walk this morning to see the effect of the snow on the ponds behind our home, and just to take it all in.  Actually amazing.  I am someone who was born and raised in the tropics and I generally do not like cold weather.  But snow, I always have to experience that.  That is something different.  Not that I always liked snow.  I remember as a kid visiting Elliot Lake Canada in early March.  We lived in Caribbean at that time and my parents had this bright idea to go to Elliot Lake in Ontario, somewhere at the end of a road between Sudbury and Salt St. Marie (the U.P. of Michigan).  You can imagine what I though of that.  It was cold and the snow was at least arm pit deep.  I was suffering, and then our hosts had this bright idea to go and roast wienies on the middle of a lake.  They build a campfire and we went to roast hot dogs on a stick.  Man was I cold.

Oh well, we had only and inch or so and it was a fun walk this morning.  I did it again in the afternoon and most of the snow was gone, but the sky was gorgeous.  The clouds were pinkish and it beautiful and crisp.

The walk did me tons of good, after being stuck in a classroom, trying to teach people something about stormwater and erosion and sediment control.  The classroom had no windows and I really needed to get out and fight my nature deficit disorder.  I was surprised by an owl (or did I surprise it).  Owls are amazing creatures in the woods.  They are the most silent flyers and I am sure I would have missed it if would have been looking down to see where my next step would have to go.  But now, it scooted out of a tree in front of me and soared away from me through the trees at eye level not making a sound.  I could not identify it, but I expect it was a barred owl, knowing what we have in the woods.  A beautiful secretive sight that not many of us see.  Just what I needed.  It's been a nice productive day.

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