Hiked with Radu again today - clean and silky Radu, amazingly sweet-smelling from his "EMERGENCY BATH" yesterday. (Seriously, that's what they called it when I mentioned on the phone that he had rolled in something nasty. They took him even though they were overbooked.)
Today's weather felt mild when you were in the sun, out of the wind, but step into the shade of a pine, and let a gust blow up and brrrrrr... it felt like January. Found my way to a fallen pine log stretched along the north-east side of our pipeline, facing south-west and the afternoon sun. Thought it would make a nice seat, so I settled down. Leaves rustled overhead and when I looked up saw that I was directly under a big White Oak. Its crown of reddish-brown leaves jiggled in the wind, with an occasional leaf flying off and twirling over the field. I love White Oaks - their scaly white bark, their lovely round-tipped leaves, and especially the fact that they are a favored roosting tree for owls. Their branches spread out as if they want to give you a hug.
As I admired the tree's bark, I noticed a slight movement. Right in front of me, barely moving, a Green Anole (in his brown phase to match the winter tree) was sunning himself on the west-facing trunk. Because he seemed to be in slow-mode I decided to attempt to draw him, and it worked! It was almost as if he was posing for me. He stayed in one position for a while, then slowly turned his head, took one step, or changed direction, never moving from within about 2 inches of where he had been. I really appreciated his cooperation. Most of the time wildlife moves too fast to study it... like the two huge whitetail deer I'd startled by the creek. Snort! Crash! their white tails flashed and Zoom! they were gone.
A tiny brown cricket clicked against brown leaves as he hopped between me and the White Oak. I wondered how many other tiny wild lives were enjoying this protected sunny spot... then I remembered the winter I was hiking on a sunny hill and came to (almost stumbled into) a nest of snakes around a sunny hollow log, much like the one I was sitting on. Ha! Fine time to remember that. You'll be glad to know that I didn't jump and run. It was time to go anyway, to go find Radu, who had wandered off possibly to find something to roll in.
I put my journal away and wandered back home.