The afternoon clouded over, the wind came up and Bear let me catch her. For a little while we escaped the noisy summer traffic on the 160 and headed out to the Big Empty where the only traffic this time of year is birds and bugs. The wind was blowing a storm into the valley so neither birds nor bugs were clogging the immense skies.
Both dogs behave differently when they are each alone with me. Teddy stops every 20 feet or so for a hug. Bear, on our return, walks close beside me with my hand on her back. Here she’s leaning against me while I take this picture. I love walking with her.
I saw a Red Head duck for the first time. His little head bobbed like an old time police car light above the pond’s choppy waters. Most exciting of all, of course, was the dramatic motion of the front as it tried to figure out where it really wanted to go. Some place in the San Luis Valley got rain, but not us. Still, the clouds are trying to figure it out, and lightning is complication of summer storms since it starts fires.
Finally we had to go home (rats!). As we neared the parking lot (I parked near the entrance in case it started thundering and lightning I could make a quick escape) I looked down and saw I had been left a present. I picked it up and studied it, pretty sure I knew what it was. As we walked the remaining few yards, the wind would try to pick up the feather and it would try to fly; it is that amazingly designed for flight. I wasn’t letting go.
At first I thought it was a left wing feather from a bald eagle, but turns out it’s a feather from the left wing of a Harris Hawk. The tip is a little worn which makes me think it’s been off the bird for a while.