9 January 2013 Reflections
This morning my wife and I sat down beside the fireplace at our “coffee pit” and scanned the morning view. Fog permeated the marsh like a misty blanket. It was serene and calming. All the Christmas decorations were down and sorta put away. I had vacuumed and cleaned the wooden floors for the umpteenth time (still finding those pesky Christmas tree needles everywhere) in preparation for today’s interview with the North Jax Monthly writer.
Old Man River, the Great Blue Heron, was on his favorite perch on the jon boat. Spunky, the Kingfisher, was already searching for breakfast. One by one the Snowy Egrets began to accumulate on the neighbors pier in anticipation of food with the incoming tide. Soon there were seven. We had peace like a river as we went about our morning routine. Over the Holidays I had been able to set up my photo blind on the dock before sunrise. Now I had to wait until my wife left (she’s not retired yet) and the care nurses arrived to watch Mom before heading to the dock. Approaching wildlife without spooking them takes skill. I was carrying two cameras around my neck, my tripod and most important of all, my coffee. I tried to sneak down low and slow as I was taught. Alas, the first to go was Old Man River, he glided quietly away into the mist as I approached. A head popped up right in front of me. It was a large river otter I had seen about a week ago. It quickly dove and headed up the marsh. I tried to get a quick shot as he swam away. You can barely see his head above the wake. The commotion caused the Snowy Egrets to get nervous and one by one they too took flight. I had messed up their peace in my quest. Oh well, time for a sip of coffee. I sat down in my folding chair remembering to get rid of the dew puddle in the seat (did you ever sit in a wet seat at 5 am?). I was going to enjoy this morning anyway. And then they came and took revenge ! They were sent I am sure by those angry egrets. Those “No See-ems “ (a gnat that is 90% jaws) began to feed on my hands and exposed head like they had never eaten before. So much for my peace! I surrendered and took my gear back in the house.
Isn’t that how life goes sometimes? We settle into our peace and those pesky critters of life come along and soon we lose it. But I experienced it this morning. You can’t take away those images which I now leave with you. Old Man River, the peaceful fog, the Snowy Egrets, the fleeting glimpse of an otter. Be blessed and have Peace like a River today..Harry