Friday, October 10, 2008

Screw politics, screw the economy

As you know, the news lately has not been good. The presidential campaign has turned mean and the economy has turned even meaner. Not a happy time in America.

Not until I stepped out on the screened porch (where I’m writing this).

The Fall season is gentle and beautiful at my adopted home in Minnesota. Next door, our neighbor’s front yard is beginning to fill with red leaves. Deep red leaves. From just the right angle, you can frame her red tree in the same picture with the orange tree across the street. In three-part harmony, our other neighbor’s tree is turning yellow.

An easy wind hums softly through the tree tops. This fall day is absolutely gorgeous. In an instant, I forget about politics and finance. This day is too good to miss. Intoxicating.

This summer, we’ve had a chipmunk (or maybe ground squirrel) living under our front porch sidewalk. Fast little creature. Curious but stand-offish. As I neared the screen door, there he was looking at me, cocked and ready to run if I got too close. I froze, not wanting to scare him away.

In a reflex move to stretch this delicious moment, I did something I’ve never done in my life. I was surprised to hear a gentle tune coming from somewhere inside me. I was singing to a goddamned ground squirrel. The little bugger seemed to enjoy it, too. He hung around a few moments more before scampering into his hidey hole.

I told you the day was intoxicating.


sph said...

thank you

Anonymous said...

Ahhh, Phenix, you are such a wuss. You make Charlie Brown look like Jesse Ventura.

Come to think of it, aren't both of those guys from Minnesota, too?

The South Plainsman said...

You just pretty well described Fall in West Texas. It has been cool with light breezes for a month (September's average temperature was 4 degrees less that last year). Lots of flowers bloooming in the yard, including chrysanthemums and hibiscus. Our resident hummingbird comes by daily to sample the wares. The squirrells are a bit less likey to come by the back yard because my dog has gotten very good at chasing them, almost catching one the last three times.

Our trees are not quite turning, but close, except for the Bradford Pears. They are a bright red already. The red oaks are just beginning to turn.

For intoxication, I turn to a Scotch and soda as the sun declines in the West. And put on some soft music for the background.

If one has to grow old, this is a very nice way to do so.

Jeff Hebert said...

Only problem: That squirrel was a Republican.

I kid, I kid! That was a lovely post, George, very evocative. Makes me wish I was there.

Anonymous said...

Hey Dad. Now you know why I love living in the country! I say hello to every hawk I see. So far I am not hearing them talking back saying hello but when that happens, I will be sure to know. (that's a joke BTW)

Animals and wildlife can be so healing to the soul. I feel sorry for fools and cruel humans like Sarah Palin and Dick Cheney who feel they have the right to kill animals for fun. There is NO EXCUSE to hunt ANY ANIMAL from a helicopter. NONE. The sad fact is that hunters will never experience a true respect for nature, though they say they do.

You can't kill it for sport if you really respect and are in awe of it. Annie (George's nature loving daughter)

Anonymous said...

I DIDN'T KNOW YOU COULD SING!!!! This is thebest time of the year...we have squirrels who sit on the railing and stare at yet I have not sung to them...but I will next time. Bill

The South Plainsman said...

Yeah. It probably was a Republican squirrel. He has been working hard to store up food for the winter, but he could be a Democrat. He was trying to drink the birds' water out of the birdbath.

My puppy is a centrist. She chases anything from either side. LOL

A great weekend to all!

Max Fischer said...

George goin' all Longfellow on me now has me waxin' nostalgia over autumn afternoons at Lake Harriet (SW Minneapolis), where "a boys will is the winds will, and the thoughts of youth are long, long thoughts".

What song were you hummin', George?

Anonymous said...

I never knew you could sing.

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