Wednesday, August 13, 2008

7,000 words?

I don't seem to have much to write about right now. At least not much that I can dash off and post with any sense of satisfaction. The few ideas I have would require lengthier posts than I'm willing to commit to on a work night, and I don't want to give them short shrift. So, I'm going to fall back on the old adage that a picture is worth a thousand words and hope these photos will tide you over for another day or two:

I took this shot of Kadi indoors at night, with only the light of the television and one lamp, and could only make out the barest outline of her profile when I checked it on the camera screen. Even though I bought Photoshop months and months ago, and bought two books to teach me how to use it, I haven't taken the time to explore it the way I should have. Nevertheless, I pulled up this dark photo in Photoshop, clicked on auto-fix, and, boy, was I impressed. Look what I got:

Photoshop also helped me save this shot of Butch sleeping beside my bed. There's a terrific dog bed about eight feet away from this spot, but this 20-year-old bedspread is 10-year-old Butch's security blanket. He's loved it since he was a puppy. I finally got wise and cut the thing in half so I can wash one piece of it while he sleeps on the other. (I fully expect to meet my demise by catching a toe in a fold of this blanket sometime when I make a middle-of-the-night trek to the bathroom.)

The neighborhood peacock, having lost my favor when he spurred me after I turned my back on him to carry in a couple of bags of groceries, evidently doesn't understand that there's a problem in our relationship. He still greets me many afternoons when I get home from work, often hopping out of the bed of the neighbor's parked pickup truck and approaching before I even have my car door open all the way. On the day I took the following photo, I walked around him (cautiously), pretended to ignore him, and came on into the house. As you can see (through the hundreds of dog-nose prints on the glass door), he didn't give up:

His persistence paid off. My daughter Kim was here, and it's been more than a year since he flogged her.

My next-door neighbor is a nurse, a lovely person, and an avid gardener. I've always loved to look over the fence at the green things growing in her yard, even if I don't always know what I'm seeing. Yesterday evening I realized she has a large tree I've never paid particular attention to, and it's loaded with pears. I don't even like pears, but there's something about a tree full of 'em that fills me with a sense of the earth's abundance.

In the same neighbor's yard is another tall tree with branches that hang over my driveway. As I left the house to go back to work after lunch today, I heard a rustling noise and glanced up at that tree just in time to see a big tail disappear among the leaves. When I discovered the source of the noise, even though I knew I'd be late for work, I came back inside to get my camera. Here's "hoo" I found:

I've since learned that this is a Barred Owl. It appeared to be disinterested in me and my camera, but I suspect this one visible eye was paying close attention:

I've heard owls near my house on several occasions, but this is the first time I've seen one. It made my day.


  1. Your pictures are magnificent! Of course, I'm a big animal lover and love them all. Thanks for sharing them!

  2. I love the owl! Very cool sighting.

  3. Great photos Velvet. You will LOVE photoshop once you get more into it. I adore that program and use it almost daily. {I give good phone lessons too ;-) }

    My uncle used to grow pears (and every other kind of fruit that grows well in the South). His trees always filled me with wonder.

    You'll get over your row with the peacock...but I'll bet you never turn your back on him again!

    The doggie pics are great too!

  4. all are nice photos usual you don't see an owl during the day.

  5. Love the photos! I'm glad you figured out how to improve the photos. The one of Kadi ought to be printed out and framed. And of course, the one of Butch too. His security blanket is so sweet.

    How long will it take for the peacock to get back in your good graces?

  6. Those are such great shots! Forgive my lack of vocabulary here but it's so cool that you spotted the owl!


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