Yesterday, while photographing the old cabin and checking out the summer residents, a single brown leaf fell just off my shoulder, settling on the step beside me. It felt like an omen of things to come. I had earlier sensed that slight change in the air that tells us we're turning the corner, summer is coming to a close. It seems premature, but it's been an odd summer.
On August 1, one of the ornamental crabs suddenly sprouted blossoms at the end of a branch, as though spring was beginning all over again. The picture I took simply does not do this oddity justice. Let's call it impressionistic. They hung around for at least a week, while the tree next to it began to shed its leaves. Mother Nature is certainly keeping us on our toes, isn't she?
Even as signs of an early fall take shape, the zinnias are coming on strong. What I cut for bouquets is replaced almost right before my eyes. Little beauties of all shapes, colors, and sizes. Two years ago, they hung on well into November. We shall see....
Several mushroom fairy rings are scattered about, along with these fine specimens, which I saw in the meadow on my walk with Buddy yesterday. Love that little heart-shaped thing, wrapped in a vine.
My squash are doing great, though, as are the potatoes and onions. I've had several mornings of sauteed zucchini and new potatoes with scrambled farm-fresh eggs. Zucchini bread is next.
The rain barrels have not been refreshed since last week. They're used mainly for a couple of small corner plots, planted with things like muskmelon (aka cantaloupe) and, earlier, radishes, that the sprinkler has trouble reaching in measured swoops. I like using rain water. So do the mosquitoes, unfortunately.
Getting back to the summer residents. Actually, they took up residence in the roof joists between the old and new(er) roof of the cabin sometime last winter. They, being a raccoon family. I let her and her babies stay put, despite all the online research I did that told me I should encourage them to move on. Now they're older and have set up camp outside, between the fireplace (have you seen anything so makeshift in all your born days?) and the birch tree, where the babies hide behind the boards, or try to. I'm sure Mama is nearby, as they appear very healthy, but I'll be keeping an eye on them from a safe distance.
Perhaps it begins with how we choose to see this world.
P.S. See that blue chair next to the cabin? It was there when I arrived over two years ago. I can't bring myself to move it. When Buddy first spotted it, he was a bit wary, giving it a wide berth and eyeing it furtively as he did so. I wonder if Otis is still there, quietly passing the summer away, watching over what was once his land, keeping an eye on things....