I will be on the River Forever, my Spirit is Free.

That dang old Bluebird ate all of my cherries again this year. Every year he does the same thing, plucking them long before they ripen. He picks them to hide between the trim and the roof of my neighbors’ house 100 feet away. There are not many of the fruit on the tree anyway, one year I was able to rob 12 from the Blue Winged Devil.

By the end of the summer, several of the pits will sprout between the gutters and the roof of the house, I shouldn’t laugh I suppose after all it’s not good to find humor in another persons’ dilemma. None of them grow long, the bird may be eating them as well who knows. My Apple Tree is not immune to his pestering beak.

Skunkpuppy and I spend a bit of time looking out the roadside window down into the garden, this afternoon he was there. Pecking at the Apples, I rarely wish I had a pellet gun or something on that order, but today the thought flashed across my mind. It’s a terrible place to take a shot at something, the road is 10 feet beyond and with my luck a car would go by. I can see myself languishing in the hoosegow while Mrs. Lebec debates bailing me out. “He’ll be able to rest in there at least, he eats anything, so that’s not a problem” I imagine her saying to the neighbor lady over a glass of wine.

There the bandit is now!

That bird is not a lost cause, he picks the Tomato worms off of the vine as well as those I toss on the drive, it takes about two minutes for him to show up and carry that particular menace away. He’s a Scrub Jay, not the Eastern species with the crown on his head, unceremoniously he goes about his business day in, day out.

Retreating to the waterside window we look at the slough, the Whitecaps created by the 15 mph wind makes the water appear to be flowing against the tide. The Otters seem to dislike the waves, perhaps all mammals do, the wind creates a hard environment to do anything in.

Except for the Crows, they appear to like the wind and play all sorts of games in it. I saw one dive into the water like a shorebird, flopping with both wings extended he took immediately to the air with something in its beak. Flying along the shoreline occasionally landing on a rock preening as if he owns the place. I suppose each bird and critter does own particular spots, humans lay claim to unmarked territories, so critters probably do as well. The noisy birds are rarely without Swallows, Red Wing Blackbirds, and Fly Catchers pecking at their tail feathers driving them away from their nesting areas.

Part of my self-assigned job around here is to bring several of my neighbors garbage cans to their storage area. I try to do as much as I am able from my scooter. Today as I was attending to the neighbors’ cans, the one the Blue Devil plants Cherry Trees in, I came upon a crime scene. Apparently, a Fox got into a tussle with either a Turkey or a Vulture, most likely the former. Black 14 inch feathers were scattered on the ground over a 10-foot area. I looked to see if the bird met its end, I don’t think it did as I was unable to find any evidence. The prime suspect is a Fox that took on a larger tougher foe, Turkeys are to be contended with. The incident appeared to have occurred during the early morning hours, the only sign was feathers. The end result would have been less desireable for the Turkey if Coyotes got to it.

I picked up the best one and stuck it in my hat, I always have at least one feather in my cap, un-earned but it makes me special in my own mind. Several people have asked, “what’s with the feather?” My reply is the same to all inquiries, “It makes me special, stick one in your cap and you’ll be special just like me.” After all these years people have gotten used to me, accepting all or mostly all, well some of my quirky ways.

Recovering from my latest Heart event after 6 days I finally have enough energy to do something around this place, I can turn my hearing amplifier off so as not to be bothered by a call from the boss “are you alright?”

Yeh, I’m fine doing what I love to do, fooling around with nature, my Spirit is Free on the River, I’ll be here forever, along with all the dogs and cats I’ve ever had the pleasure of roaming around with.

Jacques Lebec Natural Self Reliance.

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