Saturday, April 9, 2011

I'm Sorry-What's The Date Today?

I saw mayflies in March. This week, I've seen junebugs every day, and it is only the first full week of April. We've already had two days of temperatures of 90 F. I've always loved summer nights. Sometimes on a summer night I like to sit outside and feel the balmy breeze, and enjoy the summer sounds and smells, and I just feel languid and serene. This is not a normal state for me, and on the few occasions when I get to enjoy it, I really enjoy it. Well, in between slapping the mosquitoes and scratching their bites. (Mosquitoes love fat chicks, and my legs are a wonderful, glowing target.)

Last night I took my dog for her last evening walk. I decided to break up the pattern a little-always good for both of us. I usually take her out off-leash for her walks around our gated apartment complex-I'm a naturalist, and I think every dog needs some off-leash time to play and sniff. Sometimes I regret it. The first thing that happened was that my "good best friend," Abigail, spotted a neighbor cat in the bushes, and of course, she took to the chase. I smiled at this long standing tradition of nature-dog sees cat, dog chases cat, cat hisses and runs. Dogs keeps chasing, cat runs up tree. Dog stands on two legs, front paws on tree, staring at cat until something comes along to distract her. I called her, and we took out another direction, to the back portion of our property, which is divided from a wild field by a property long fence. The fence is covered with vines and leaves, though there are some spots where the fence is not at ground level, and Abigail can easily slip under, which is worrisome, as we have seen and heard coyotes in the field. She would be a tasty meal for one of those other canids. Usually my concern is ignored completely if she sees a rabbit on our side of the fence-she is gone, and then the rabbit disappears into the brush. Tonight Abigail understood me when I said, "Don't go there!" But there was something strange-other than my little dog understanding English conversation. The balmy wind was so pleasant, the night was fairly clear, so I could see lots of stars as we walked. The big field has a little creek, which is lovely to hear, but sad to see in daylight because of all the trash people throw in it. But I heard the chirrup of crickets toward the creek. I love that sound; it just adds to the summer night ambiance. But I noticed a smell. I couldn't quite place it, but it was very pleasant and familiar. We kept walking. I suppose several of our neighbors were out earlier because Abigail was finding plenty of smells to center on. The smell I caught grew stronger, languid and heavy, as we walked toward the south. I finally realized what it was, but didn't think it was possible-honeysuckle. It is WAY too early for honeysuckle to inhabit our nights. I didn't see anything walking south, but when we got to the end, and turned toward the north to walk back, I did see the vines on the fence in the opposite light, and the honeysuckle vines were covered with blooms-covered! My inner smile came out as I saw those welcome visitors of my favorite summer nights. I hope they haven't bloomed too early. 

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