The One About The Neighbors: What Will Be, What Isn’t Anymore, And What Is

Neighbor’s dead tree with turkey vultures [or turkey buzzards, pick your nomenclature]: I don’t like this.
WHAT WILL BE:

“Come and listen to my story bout a man named Jed, Poor mountaineer barely kept his family fed…”  

Remember The Beverly Hillbillies? And remember their theme song?

Of course you do.

Well, that’s the song that’s been stuck in brain this past weekend.

Why?

I know not for sure other than Thanksgiving is about hospitality– and somehow seeing turkey vultures lounging above our property on the neighbor’s dead tree, that leans precariously in the direction of our screened-in porch, put the tune in my mind.

I don’t know that Jed Clampett shot turkey vultures, but it seems like something he’d have done.  I do know that the dead tree will eventually fall.  Fingers crossed, not on our roof.

So there’s that.

• • •

Neighbor’s empty backyard: I like this.

WHAT ISN’T ANYMORE:

“Well the first thing you know Jed’s a millionaire, Kinfolk said Jed move away from there…”

And speaking of neighbors I’ve taken the liberty of sharing with you, my gentle readers, a photograph of their empty backyard.  A backyard that is free from a huge, formerly well-used, swing set that is no longer there.

While I admit that the kids playing on the swing set were hilarious and the squirrels frolicking on the swing set were total goofballs, I’m happy that it’s gone from my view.

The neighbor kids are old enough to drive now and the swing set has disappeared, presumably to some other backyard where it’ll be loved as much as it was here.

Change happens, eh?

• • •

Neighbor’s wistful cat: I like him.

WHAT IS:

“You’re all invited back again to this locality, To have a heaping helping of their hospitality…”  

And finally while I’m on the topic of neighbors, here is a photo of their black and white kitty cat as seen on a foggy morning.

I don’t know his name, but he occasionally likes to sit under one of our trees.  He’s a natural, knowing how to pose for the camera– and takes a darned good picture.

He’s not destructive, just inquisitive, and not afraid to hang out in our yard when so moved by his need for a little peace and quiet away from kids and dogs.

I can understand.

• • •

Questions of the Day

{ answer whichever question OR questions strike your fancy }

  1. So what’s up with your neighbors?  Any of their trees poised to fall on your house? Anything missing from their yards? Any of their pets enjoying a respite in your yard?
  2. Can you sing The Beverly Hillbillies theme song from memory like I can?  How about Gilligan’s Island theme song?  Or The Flintstone’s theme song? 
  3. Do you believe I could get any more rambling and random than I have in this post?  And how does that make you feel?

The Tale Of The Nosy Robin + Reading Material For Your Edification

ONCE UPON A TIME the Lady of the House was minding her own bidness, standing in her kitchen pouring some granola into a bowl, when she was startled, almost out of her skin, by an obnoxious bird.

THIS BIRD, A ROBIN, made himself known by peering into the kitchen as if he wanted into the house.  Which wasn’t going to happen.

THE LADY OF THE HOUSE, in a Tippi Hedren moment, had a sudden horrifying flashback to The Birds, a creepy movie the Lady of the House saw at an impressionable age.

UPON REGAINING HER COMPOSURE the Lady of the House watched as the nosy robin stalked her, boldly staring at her and the bowl of granola that she was eating.

NOT WANTING TO RUFFLE any feathers the Lady of the House, a charitable woman, decided to give the nosy robin some granola.  Hence she bravely went outside onto her deck, and put a small handful of granola on the railing.

HOWEVER, THE UNGRATEFUL ROBIN flew away when the Lady of the House walked onto the deck, leaving the granola untouched.

WHILE YOU MIGHT THINK that’d be a good thing, it turns out that what the Lady of the House inadvertently did was chase the nosy robin to the front of the house where he dive-bombed the outside of the window in the foyer for hours.  The end.

~
Learn More About Robins AND OTHER BIRDS

Birds Attacking Windows

How to Stop Birds Attacking Window Glass

Birds as Omens and Signs

Has The Mystery Behind Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds Been Solved?

When The Red Red Robin Comes Bob Bob Bobbin’ Along

~
Happy Spring!

“Live, Love, Laugh and Be Happy”

~ ~  ~ ~

Of Hummingbirds & Humility

screen-shot-2016-10-21-at-7-41-34-amI was dive-bombed by a hummingbird the other morning.

I was wearing a bright pink fleece jacket, sitting outside on our deck in the sunshine, drinking coffee from a red mug.

I was lost in serious thought pondering what I might write about next on this blog, when *flutter, flutter, flutter* a small energetic little bird started diving at me.

I knew that the bird was a hummingbird;  there are lots of them in the wooded ravine behind our house.

They flit around.  You cannot miss them.

I knew that to this little bird I must look like the biggest darned flower in the land, a doozy of a good find.

I tried to sit still hoping that the little bird would tire of attacking me, but you know what?  That little bugger just kept going.  The Energizer Bunny should be so determined.

Eventually I decided to *shoo* the hummingbird away from me because I needed to sip my coffee while it was hot to get my brain going.  I had important things to think about like the topic of my next blog post.

But of course my brain, that can be a tad self-absorbed and egotistical, was blinding me to the obvious.

That is, the topic of this post was making itself known, quietly, right in front of me.  A humble little idea showing me the way, while at the same time reminding me of the basic premise of The Spectacled Bean.

A premise I explain thusly:

  • be here now;
  • make sense of what you’re seeing | feeling | experiencing;  then
  • write about it.

In other words, PAY ATTENTION.  Life is in the details, and that’s where you’ll find the best stories.

Always.

Heebie-Jeebies Alert: Creepy Birds Here

GLANCING OUT INTO THE BACKYARD the other morning I saw these birds walking on the grass, wandering along the edge of the forest behind my house.

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TO ME THESE HUGE BIRDS looked like gang members, in black leather jackets, up to no good, on the hunt for something.

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HAVING MISTAKENLY IDENTIFIED BIRDS BEFORE [and having had approximately 3 gazillion + 27 people tell me I was wrong], I’m going to say that I don’t know what  gang these birds belong to kind of birds they are.

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INSTEAD I’LL CONTINUE TO REFER to them as Creepy Birds, because they give me the heebie-jeebies and the name, you gotta admit, seems right. *shudder*

A Report From The Sidelines Re: Neighbor Vs. Birds

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 { Image Source }

[Note to readers: we live in a neighborhood with homes built on wooded ravine lots.  With many trees.  In which birds build nests, as they are wont to do.  These are facts.]

• • •

The neighbor woman who lives behind us has upped her anti-bird campaign.  She’s still out to chase all the birds away from her property, but she has a new tactic.

Now, in addition to her shouting and noise-making, she has begun to place bright shiny silver & red metallic streamers in her trees.

• • •

She wanders around her backyard throwing these streamers up into the air near tree branches.  Then when a streamer gets caught on a tree branch she loosely ties it to the branch, leaving yards of streamer fluttering in the wind.

This means that when the sun shines and hits the moving streamers, her backyard has bright lights randomly twinkling.  It reminds me of an old-fashioned used car lot, which I guess she thinks is a turn-off for birds.

• • •

I find this new behavior alternately entertaining or annoying.

What entertains me is that her neighbors on the property immediately beside her have put a large bird feeder on a shepherd’s hook.  They’ve positioned the shepherd’s hook in such a way that she’ll see the bird feeder ever time she steps outside onto her deck, but they cannot see it from their deck.

Don’t you just love passive-aggressive behavior?

• • •

However, what annoys me is that when the streamers are twinkling their brightest the light from them is strong enough to be noticed on our TV screen.  Inside the house.  Across the ravine.

Meaning that if we happen to be watching something on TV, our show has little sparkly red dots of color superimposed on it.  It’s kind of like stroking out without going to the bother of having a stroke.

Now how strange is that?

Pondering A Neighbor’s Nutty Behavior

You know how sometimes when you’re walking along a downtown city street and a person, who is nuttier than a fruitcake soaked in rum, starts shouting nonsensical things at you from the other side of the street?

Well, here’s my suburban equivalent of that city experience.

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Woman on other side of street pointing at passersby as she shouts for no discernible reason. 

{ Source: Folger Shakespeare Library Digital Image Collection 

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I was sitting outside on our deck, mid-afternoon, reading a catalogue, enjoying the mild October weather.

When BAM-BAM-BAM the neighbor woman who lives behind us on the other side of the wooded ravine started clanking metal objects together.  This went on for about a minute.

I was startled, of course, so I looked up from my reading to see what was going on that required this much noise.  I saw nothing out of the ordinary.

So I went back to reading my catalogue.

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Me outside my house heading toward the deck to enjoy a bit of fresh air.

{ Source: Folger Shakespeare Library Digital Image Collection 

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But that was not the end it.  About a minute after she stopped clanking metal objects together she yelled to no one in particular: “Don’t. Feed. The. Birds.”

Then I heard her stomp into her house and slam shut the sliding patio door, leaving me to ponder what the heck she was talking about and who she thought would hear her.

It also made me realize that I needed to thank my lucky stars that the nuttier-than-a-fruitcake suburban neighbor lives way over there on the other side of the ravine.

Far away from me.  Forsooth.

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My nutty neighbor decreeing from afar that which we are to do henceforth.

{ Source: Folger Shakespeare Library Digital Image Collection 

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Almost Autumn: This Change Of Season Suits Me

This past Sunday morning was the first day in months where the temperature was below 60ºF and the humidity was low.

Delightful. Refreshing. Clear.

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I was able to drink my first mug of coffee while sitting on the deck all by myself.  Experiencing the stillness of the early morning centered me in a way that makes me feel whole.

Hopeful. Capable. Calm.

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It wasn’t until I looked up into the trees behind our house that I realized how soon it’ll be autumn. And that I wasn’t alone out there on the deck.  Two birds, way up high, were keeping me company.

Cheerful. Balanced. Orange.

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Autumn is about letting go of what used to work and enjoying what is. I’ve found over the years that I can embrace its message because I’m open to new ideas and seem to have an aptitude for adjusting to what is.

Creative. Grateful. Aware.

DSCN3541Meaning that in about another month this tree, next to where the birds were sitting, will be a showy mess of fall color.  And when it is I plan to be engrossed in new projects and a healthier way of life.  Hello Autumn!

Determined. Grounded. Focused.