Robert (gurdonark) wrote,

Cardinals in Cedars

Texas Sky in August, originally uploaded by gurdonark.

I rose early today and drove a few miles north to McKinney's Erwin Park. I usually visit this park on cold days in winter, when I share moments of solitude under December skies with vultures, crows, and robins.

This morning I arrived just before the time the park opens at 8 a.m. The parking lots were full of cars. Errwin Park's main draw is as a single-track bicycle place. Although we have no mountains in Collin County, a riparian woodland offers the cyclist the chance to roll up and down into little ravines, in between jaunts under amber skies through yellow fields.

I found a parking space in one of the more remote lots, where only a car or two was parked. The wonderful thing about Erwin Park is that it has such a broad expanse of land that even moderately heavy usage by other hikers does not impact the sense of "alone with nature" that I long for when I visit a park.

I stood by a small forest where a warbler sang from a tree, taking a voice recording of his song. I watched a cardinal saunter from bare branch to bare branch of a tree above me. I watched little fish make little zipper marks on the surface of a pond. I listened to the lowing of cattle, often placid, but one calf had an urgent compliant to raise.

I had my little Mikona DV-8 camera, whose .3 megapixels gives a mildly lomo effect to each snapshot it takes. This camera has no "view screen" and no "smart card". It has a tiny flash memory which holds 25 small pictures. I filled the camera.

When I drove to exit the park, I saw a lovely hot air balloon framed just above a horizon of woodland. I hurriedly cleared a picture off the camera, so that I could snap a shot. After a wrong button-press or so, I finally had 1 picture left to shoot. I turned to the horizon, just in time to see the lovely balloon go down. This is the photographic equivalent of the "one that got away".

I like open spaces in which so many thing shappen, but only if you watch and listen subtly for the changes and events.

When I drove home, I saw the parched heat has shriveled the local corn fields. Farming is a giant lottery, and only the Summer knows who wins.


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