01.08.15 That’s what Sarah wrote me, after she saw this photo. Hmmmm–I’m having a “be careful what you wish for” moment, here in the dark this morning. Desperate to get out and go for a walk/run these past snowbound days, I see there’s freezing fog right now with a wind chill temperature of -9. “Blustery”, says NOAA. “Brisk”, they say in London when it’s 30 degrees warmer than this.
Yesterday afternoon, I waded outside in the bright sunshine to investigate. All day, I had watched deer and wild turkeys make their way from the lake up through our yard, eventually breaking free of the deep snow at the shoveled steps which lead to the garage and the woods. The fat black turkeys looked like they were swimming on top the snow, occasionally jumping up to a low-hanging branch on a bush. They would swing back and forth on the skinny branch, wings flapping hysterically. The white-tail deer, on their incredibly thin legs, picked their way slowly and carefully through snow that nearly reached their underbellies. For a long time, there was a parade of a dozen or so turkeys and six or eight deer, making the trek. I wanted to open the door and take a photo, but I knew the deer would be so frightened that they would try to run and I couldn’t bear to watch them struggle. Even with my camera held inside against the window, they saw me, looked me in the eye with their beautiful big eyes, and I couldn’t make the noise of pushing the button. On the porch outside our bedroom, for two days, a little Black-cap Chickadee, with a rosy chest, has been perching on the arm of the wicker chair still out there; I did open the door to frighten him away when I saw one of the kitties hunched down into position at the other end of the porch. When I picked my way through the deer tracks down to the water, the snow was above my knees and cascaded down into my boots. I was amazed at how much effort it took to trudge through that snow; how in awe I am of the deer, the turkeys, the Chickadees–winter survival.