A brilliant blue sky awaited me just as soon as I stepped out of the door to leave on my walk. My boss was out of the office all morning, so I planned to enjoy an extended excursion at Council Point Park and simply enjoy the beautiful day … and I surely did. As I walked through the neighborhoods I noted the carnage of once-ornately carved pumpkins which have since been ravaged by the weather … and the squirrels. That killer frost the other night didn’t take out any of the mums and they were still looking like clumps of rich jewels in homeowners’ gardens and porch pots as I passed them. I arrived at the Park parking lot at promptly 8:30 a.m. and my heart just melted as one of my peanut pals dashed (or maybe I should say waddled quickly) over to see me. I immediately cursed at myself for not wearing my raggedy coat with the huge cargo pockets that I can stuff with critter treats, because I only had the remnants of an old Baggieful of peanuts from the last visit to the Park to offer up. Before I dispensed any peanuts, and, as my squirrel buddy wiggled around, eagerly waiting on me next to my shoe tip, I first dispensed some wisdom by admonishing him for running around in the parking lot. His cuteness factor yielded all my stash and I left him happily munching away, only for him to come trailing after me the second loop on the trail. Yup, it was him, and, nope, not all squirrels look alike. I’m sure this was the guy I spoiled silly last Fall as he always came to greet me. I am such a sucker for animals. He followed along behind me as I walked along the perimeter path and I kept turning and looking over my shoulder. I found myself making such promises as “next time I’ll bring you more” and I was surely losing my credibility to any onlookers. That’s okay by me.
My attention was next diverted when I heard honking – alot of honking … probably more than in a mall parking lot on Black Friday. I swiveled my head up and saw a gaggle of geese overhead and soon they started swooping down to near the baseball diamond. They descended quickly and regrouped on the ground, stopping to nibble on the freshly shorn grass. I watched them from the trail and they lingered on. By the time I was ready to leave they still were there milling about. I purposely walked by them and whipped out my camera to get a group shot but it was a little blurry. Suddenly the leader decided no more languishing and in a heartbeat he was airborne. The remaining geese started to follow him, lifting off one by one … it was fascinating to watch and I did it from the viewfinder of the camera and took a shot, as you see above. I wondered if somehow in “goose speak” they do a pre-flight check amongst themselves, i.e.:
“Wings – check”
“Flaps – check”
“Nose (er, beak) – check”
“Landing gear – check”
“All systems are go.”
“Okey-dokey – Let’s head out boys.”
Well, in the end, between looking behind me and above my head, I managed to walk six miles on a beautiful Autumn morn – a walk fueled by nature’s inspiration and a little imagination.