A beautiful foggy day. I call fog beautiful for the way it gives the natural world a sense of a Japanese screen. Rhododendron leaves glossy wet, the crooked limbs in the foreground darkened by the mist of rain. Last year's leaves cover the ground, a soft carpet speckled in shades of reddish brown from light tan to dark like a pointillist painting. Green spikes of daffodil leaves, six to eight inches long, point straight up in clusters, poking through the carpet. Snowbirds and chickadees peck among fallen pine needles, reddish brown. The birds hop and run about, slate-gray and white, quick bird movements. The female cardinal wary, pecks a seed and raises her head to nibble the seed out of the shell, looks in all directions, flew to a rhododendron branch. I suspect a psychotherapist would call the birds hyper-vigilant. The squirrels are too. Heads darting back and forth, looking in all directions, each eye covering half the way around. They appear to shift attention from eye to eye while seeing from both. The cautious bird survives. They have predators in the air and on land. A momentary lapse of attention is all it takes to be snatched out of the air by hawk talons or from the ground by cat claws. That's ok, too. They go on to their next lives and the hawk or cat has a good meal. The cycle of life. Hopping and flying candy bars. Out another window I see Jack grazing a mound of hay in the fog.
Talked with friends on the phone twice during the day. Both complained and drooped to the ground within over how boring it is to have a wet, overcast day. And I was enjoying it, admiring the richness in colors on a wet, overcast day, the windows Japanese screens. The sunlight bleaches colors, while rain and fog bring out the colors, make them shine. I don't understand seeing a beautiful day like today dreary. It wasn't even bad to go out in. Walked to feed the donkeys and back. Walked to the mailbox and back. Did not get wet either time. It was as beautiful to me out in it as a sunny day. I live simply because I want to be close to the elements, the weather, the seasons, day, night. All the green things were perked up and cheery, feeling good, glowing on a warm day above freezing, wet on the leaves and the roots. Winter grows wearisome after several months, heat going all the time, cold floors, but it's not a problem. My car drives well in snow and mud. I have sweaters, coats, heavy socks and hats. As long as I keep the electric bill and the kerosene bill paid, I'm ok. Winter is the time for feeding hay to the donkeys and extra seeds for the birds. Whatever the weather, I go out to take hay to the donkeys and think nothing of the weather. If it's zero, I dress for zero. It is a love gift I'm taking them, so it is not an inconvenience for me. It's what I do. Rain, I wait til the rain calms down. The donkeys stay in their shed during rains. The rains don't last long. It's not like the donkeys go hungry. They stand in their den, side by side, and gaze into their meadow in rain.
photos by tj worthington