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I'm a woman entering "the third chapter" and fascinated by the journey.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

What were they thinking?

A walk in this afternoon's glorious sunshine and warm (for February in the Valley) temperatures left me wondering what was on the minds of some of the creatures observed.

First, a quartet of Canada geese were chasing each other around in the rapidly-flowing Muskingum River. One would squawk, take off for a few feet a few inches above the water, and land back in the river, only to be overtaken by another doing exactly the same thing. They never actually left the river during the time I watched them, but just kept scooting around and making irritated-sounding noises. Establishing MY spot to float in? Mate selection? Playing? (I must confess to having no idea what geese think.)

Then two crows were engaging in a sidewalk conversation. I never actually saw the second crow, only heard it, but one handsome specimen kept turning in profile, allowing itself to be admired until I got too close. After downing some tiny gravel (or something in the tiny gravel--I couldn't tell), the crow flew into a dogwood and looked at me suspiciously. Its conversation partner had already fallen silent.

Then, something I had never seen before--a large flock of gulls engaging in some sort of aerial dance. They were swooping around each other, making intricate patterns like starlings in a murmuration, but when the sun hit at the right angle, light actually flashed from the birds' wings. Whether this movement had any purpose other than sheer beauty and joy, I've no idea.

Then, a human whose behavior left me wondering. Today was a lovely day, but no more than 65 degrees. I was not expecting to see a (very) pale male human in swim shorts, lying on a beach towel in his (or someone's) driveway.  What was he thinking?

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