Monday, September 28, 2009

If it's Sunday, I must be in Kansas.

Sunday morning I went out to see if anything was happening in the backyard...just this little skipper on the four-o'clocks. I went inside and got my camera and when I came out, she was still there so I took lots and lots of pictures. Lots. Because she was not moving for anything.

It was kind of breezy so at times she fluttered a little to stay in place but she was not going to give up that spot for any breeze or me.

After every commotion from me or the weather, it was back to flattening out on the four-o'clocks which by the way, had no blooms. They had already gone to seed. I'm not sure why she was so drawn to that spot.

Anyway, this little moth, butterfly, whatever skippers are, sure was patient with me....well, until my camera lens actually touched her and then she had enough and flew away.

It turned out that she was the only bug in the backyard. You know what that means......time to get in the car and head for Kansas to chase clouds and bugs with my camera.

Yes. This is more of what I'm used to. Somebody doing their best to get away from the camera.

This little leaf-footed bug sure has an interesting outfit with those polka-dotted pettipants and white go-go boots.

This long-jawed orb weaver was trying to hide from me in the web he built over the creek. While I tried getting a picture of him, I heard the plops of frogs escaping to hide under the rocks in the creek. At least I knew something was there. I had to look really hard just to find a bug. I guess I caught everyone between shifts because it was kind of late in the day but not late enough for the night bugs to start getting busy.

So I went walking in the woods. I found lots of isolated jack-in-the-pulpit berry pods. I thought that since they were probably ripe, I might as well help them along and plant some of the berries.

They have a rather interesting look when they're stripped of their berries.

I couldn't decide if they were weirdly pretty or just pretty weird.

With all this looking and planting, I eventually got off trail and got lost. I got stuck in a vine too. Hiking with a handbag is tough going.

At least it was still light out. And if I ever came back to this spot, or could find it again, if I ever left (it was getting a little Blair Witch because I could not find a trail out anywhere), I would like to look up at these trees again when they all change color in a couple weeks.

I don't know what this tree is but I'm just going to call it a shagbark hickory because what else could you call it?

I eventually found my way out. Gawd. What a walk. And that's when I found my discovery of the day. Notice how I was not joined by Aussie? Well, Miss Aussie Mueller had to stay indoors for the day because it had been requested by the person I met by the creek when I finally got myself out of the woods.

I had run into her when my car pulled up behind hers in the driveway. She's a portrait photographer who lives up the street. She felt horrible for being caught on the land but she had no idea who the new owner was and the previous owner had given her permission to use the land for her photography. Ha ha ha. I was going to say no to a middle-aged woman with a camera in the middle of nowhere when I was up to the exact same thing?

We walked around the property and she showed me all the good spots for taking pictures. One was a rock ledge over the creek near a gentle waterfall. I had to agree with her. That was one beautiful spot. She pointed to an area where the oak trees were and said that in about three weeks it was going to be absolutely glorious. I believe her. She invited me to her house and then showed me all the portrait photographs she had done in the last two years and where they were taken on the property. All very, very pretty.

I did feel bad about Aussie though. Apparently Aussie had to be prevented from her enthusiastic participation because that dog loves that creek too and frequently jumps in there, gets herself all muddy and then jumps out to join the fun....getting everyone involved in the camera shoot verrrrrry muddy.

This is the weird thing. Aussie lives across the street. That creek that is on my land is the creek that goes through her land. I don't think a gravel road separating us is going to make a dramatic difference in the geography. But play in her creek? No. Play in my creek? I think that happens several times a day. I should be miffed by all these different characters stomping on the land but for some reason, it's a nice feeling to have so many people and animals in love with the land too.

And that was my Sunday. I heard an owl hoo hoo-hoo hoo hooooooooooo and thought I better go. I never did find a good spot to take a photo on the road so I just clicked my camera at who knows what while I kept my eye on the road and drove all the way home.

It's always pretty out there, even when it's out of focus.


Maureen said...

Another lovely Sunday in the country, mine was spent writing on my day off with the usual sirens and street arguments going on outside. Thanks for the sunshine!

Maria said...

I do not miss those days. When I lived in SF, the bars opened at 6 am and closed at....4 am? Opportunity for lots of "discussions" punctuated with the sound of broken bottles.

Leenie said...

Wow, posing skippers, stylin' bugs with go-go boots, Freaky-creep-me-out huge spiders, shaggy trees and a cool neighbor. Fun reading and photos. I missed Aussie.

The Vintage Vignette said...

You have such a gift in the way you draw us into your daily adventures on your beautiful land. I look forward to reading each and every one of your entries and to savouring the vivid photos you include. I love the closeups of your turtles and critters. Take it from this professional blogger that you have great talent and should be writing a column or a regular magazine feature somewhere! :)

Maria said...

Leenie-Ha ha ha. Wasn't that spider something? When I was looking at the fangs, it looked more like the thing had two heads. Eeeeeee! Good thing that spider was shy. The bug with the polka dot pettipants made up for it though.

I'm glad you liked the story. And I miss that Aussie toooooo! I even remembered to bring dog treats this time. Oh well...hopefully when I go out there this weekend, Missy (the photographer) won't be there so Aussie will have the freedom to stomp through the creek.

Maria said... What an incredibly nice comment. It stopped me in my tracks....although I was sitting in front of my computer. Could there be anything more fun than writing whatever you want (without trying to please editors) and getting paid for it?

I have to admit that I struggle with writing (and getting to the point) so when I am able to pull it off, especially when it's confirmed with a comment such as yours, that is a very, very good feeling.

Who knows? Maybe one day. I've been writing my blog for a little over a year and although my blog is written pretty much just for me so I won't forget things, it also has been a way to improve my writing. I look back to what I posted a year ago and feel good that I have improved so much at finding my voice. I think that was my goal when I started and I think I'm finally getting there.

Girl, that was some comment.

Rural Rambler said...

Maria those are some kind of wonderful captures! I love the Skipper and the little leaf bug! Nice post to start my morning!