Mulling things on my morning ramble
with Storm, the family's mixed Lab.
I find the tug-of-war between living in the civilized world and the pull of getting away into the wilderness central to not only what I do in life but how I live.
Last night I was finishing up a Sunday column on George Desort's ``Fifty Lakes One Island'' documentary, his intensely personal look at spending 80 nights alone on Isle Royale, so that tug-of-war between wilderness and civilization is much on my mind.
My morning rambles with the meathead are an extension of that, quite frankly tying back into an extended backpacking trip I did on the southern Appalachian Trail, more than 30 years ago and a couple other extended backpacking and hiking adventures.
Moments can define life, same as distant experiences can.
For me, it is wild adventures that define my life, even when I am enmeshed in the thoroughly modern world. They left an imprint.
Storm rushed a gray squirrel off the front porch as we set out. That kind of morning, squirrelly.
Sparrows raised a row near a neighbor's roof. Robins were everywhere in yards. Young mourning doves showed as much sense as teenage boys. I think there is a tie-in there.
At the town pond, the Canada geese and their goslings were clumped on the west side of the north old clay pit. I thought I heard the belted kingfisher, but I couldn't find it on the south pit.
The honeysuckle is nearly completely done flowering. Now it is simply the invasive branches clutching at me like something out of a zombie movie. The prime bloomer now is raspberries and blackberries.
Near home, a squirrel made the mistake of being trapped on a wooden fence under a neighbor's bur oaks. The meathead is an opportunistic chaser. He saw an opportunity and gave chase.
Just before our steps, he made one final thrust to chase another squirrel up our neighbor's old gnarled elm.