Sunday, September 05, 2010

A stroll through Stonybrook

Stonybrook Audubon Preserve in Norfolk, MA
Fall is in the air!  This morning we finished a walk through the Stonybrook Wildlife preserve.  I say "finished," because the last walk was interrupted by swan grooming.  Yup!  The two adult swans and their three (big) cygnets had taken over the main path and were grooming their feathers like crazy.  Out of consideration for the family activity, we retraced our steps.  This morning we went the other way and I promptly fell down on some not-so-steep stone stairs and decided to take the "stroller/wheelchair" path instead.

I wish to report about the bees in the waterlilies.  The waterlilies were all nicely abloom, white flowers open, and nearly every flower had a drunken bee, cavorting, luxuriating, acting totally unBeelike in the bowels of the flower.  I have never seen bees behave like that.  At first I thought the bees could not extract themselves from the flowers, but they did.  It was like strong drug, but for bees.  Very strange.

We passed where the swan grooming took place last week.  It must happen at that spot all the time, because the ground was so littered with white feathers I thought maybe a fox or coyote had got one of them.  Not so, just grooming dross.  We spied the swans eating that green algae like stuff in the water.  Still two parents and three sibs.  No fox meal there.

 Turtle sunning himself.  Geese in flight.  Chipmunk scampering. 

I saw a fuzzy caterpiller and was reminded of my childhood when I collected them into a shoebox in the fall, and provided some grass, etc., in hope that they would spin a coccoon and emerge in the spring, but in the spring the shoebox was gone, no doubt a victim of my mother's (to me) obsessive cleanliness.  I did like fuzzy caterpillars.

 The vegetable garden at the preserve, I am sorry to say, was totally ungroomed.  Animals eating the tomatoes, basil not deadheaded, weeds riotous.  I could have stayed all day bringing order to the beds. 

Tonight we're grilling bratwurst and I'll make some fried potatoes (lots of onions) and my special sauerkraut that my mother-in-law taught me how to make.  It has no resemblance to sauerkraut that comes out of a can.  I really gussy it up until it becomes like the Platonic Form of Sauerkraut.  Yup.  It's good.

The MAN burned last night and I need to find a web video to watch.  Always such a thrill. 

Onward,

Grapeshot

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