Saturday, July 30, 2011


As I start this entry, I am sitting in northern California as another perfect day dawns. Shortly the sun will begin a repeat performance of yesterday and the day before. The wild turkey family will march in line along the long expanse of the driveway. before disappearing into the hills.The deer will stop and stare as you come too near for their comfort. The horses will graze in the pasture and wait for the carrot that accompanies my wife's arrival. Across the road, the bull will wait by the fence, ignoring you even as you move nearer.

Jo and I will go for our morning walk, moving about in East Coast time, while the rest of this universe, on a different clock, is still asleep. On our earliest of trips out here, we journeyed into the nearby hills of the state park, where we sometimes moved to the side of its narrow path to let horse and rider pass.

Sadly, as I walk through the stables, I see just nameplates of some who became our friends through the years. The stalls are empty, or house unfamilar guests. By mid-morning, a large horse, a temporary occupant trying to recover from a leg injury, is being moved to a rehab facility. We watch as the owner engages in a prolonged dance to coax her horse into the waiting trailer. Like a hesitant child, it requires promises of treats and soothing words before tentative steps are taken and the goal is accomplished.

A few years earlier, on virtually the same ground, we witnessed the unforgettable sight of a deer in mortal distress being put down, its hind quarters almost fully eaten away by what must have been a mountain lion's attack.

Nearby, I hear the gentle cooing of the doves who are housed in their own quarters. They are but an afterthought here.

In the meadow, I spot the cat, resting and quiet. It is a member of the household, but we rarely cross paths, as it prefers to spend its days in more interesting pursuits than interacting with me.

But always the most important are the dogs. I have had my favorites, but now there is one who has captured my heart. Yogi is an all star, chasing down frisbees and balls as easily as DiMaggio roamed centerfield. He is relentless, and relentlessly happy.

It is now late afternoon, as this piece has been composed in little bursts. From where I sit, the only sound I hear is the humming of this computer. No noise of humanity, no passing car, no honking horn, no ringing phone or overheated discussion: nothing pierces the quiet.

It is summer and this is our annual pilgrimage to a very different reality.


Anonymous said...

Lucky, lucky!!!!! Have Fun!.. I hope you run in to Jesse and Daryl.. they are some where around you! Safe flight home...

Anonymous said...

I read your blog....you were quite poetic....it does seem magical out there.
Enjoy yourselves,

David B