Sunny nooks

Wow! What a beautiful fall we are having up here in cattle country!

Occasional showers intermingled with bright blue, white-cloud skies, with winds, to date, that could be classified as not much more than a refreshing breeze.

There is absolutely no reason to lie in bed in the morning.

The fact is folks, I have nothing to complain about, but that is a depravation that most of my friends and acquaintances of same age seem not to enjoy.

My Little Lady taught me well how to cook, so it is not unusual for me to make my own breakfast and lunch. This I enjoy doing and most days during late spring, summer and early fall, I have the pleasure of eating outdoors in a wind-free nook on our front porch.

This porch faces east, which catches the early morning sun, and by noon, when the sun reaches high heat, it has a shady nook that seems to catch even the lightest breeze. It is here that Foxy, our house dog, and I often slouch in slumber. It is here that loafing can be done at its best.

A large portion of the farm can be viewed from this spot, and just recently I could see a lone crow sitting high on a leafless tree limb near the hardwood bush on the eastern farm corner. I could hear its constant faraway caw and see the insistent bobbing of its head up and down. It seemed to be overexcited about something and I was soon to learn why.

The resident red-tailed hawk had obviously caught something in the nearby long grass and was having trouble lifting it up and out. The crow, seeing an easy fast-food lunch, was afraid of the hawk and was calling for help. Within what seemed like seconds, crows came flying in from all corners. There must have been a, hard to count, dozen or more of them swirling around the hawk in tight, noisy circles.

Then out of the sky from nowhere came the hawk’s mate. I could hear it scream, once, maybe twice, as it circled once around high up, the second lower down, and before its wide wings swept the third circle lower, the crows had shut up and were gone.

They had vanished far faster than they had come. There would be no free lunch for them at this time.

As I further watched the labouring hawk lifting its heavy catch, perhaps a young rabbit, heading straight, it too,  disappeared among the frost-coloured leaves of the giant maples. I presumed it was feeding its young.

Later that same day, I saw three hawks circling, again and again, low over the short grass where second-cut hay had been removed a week earlier. It was my belief then, as it is now, that it was mom teaching her offspring to catch their own mouse for lunch. No crows interfered.

Take care, ’cause we care.



Barrie Hopkins