Sunday, April 26, 2009

There is nothing like living in the country. When I awoke this morning, a fresh, cool breeze gently tickled the curtains and breathed through the room. The stars were peeking through the clouds and life just felt 'right'.

As I write this, I've just returned from opening the sunroom doors to the kitchen. The windows are all open in the sunroom, and the air is cool in there. I took a moment to stand in one of the windows, looking out into the area surrounding our home. It's still dark, lit only by the few porch lights of some of the neighbors.

It's quiet outside, but for the barnyard that lies behind the nearby woods. My goodness, there's a competition going on among the roosters! It's quite a ruckus. I don't know how a creature, as small as a rooster is, can muster such volume! I noticed again this morning, how each of the fowl has his own distinctive voice, just as each of us has his/her own sound.

There are times when the all the animals in the barnyard 'over yonder' use their sounds at once. We strongly suspect that there's an 'enemy in the camp' when we hear that much noise at one time. Perhaps a fox has come in, or a coyote. Whatever the reason for the cacophony, I wonder sometimes how the farmer's family gets any sleep at all. They get a little noisey around feeding time, too, but you can distinguish between the sound meaning "I'm hungry" and "HELP" after you've heard it a few times.

There are many things about living outside the urban areas that are inviting to me. There are only two things that I can think of that I don't care much for, but also haven't had to deal much with. That is snakes. Our next door neighbor arrived on the doorstep, pale as a ghost, on the morning of July 4, 2007. She was asking for my husband's help. I asked what it was she needed, and she stuttered that there was a big snake on her patio. My husband was 'indisposed' at the moment, and would have been of little help to her anyway, as his greatest fear in life is snakes. She took off running to aleviate the problem on her own. She went to the garage, grabbed her shovel, and promptly chopped the head of the snake. She became my heroine after that! The snake was just a king snake, another version of a black racer, and fortunately, they're the 'good' kind to have, if you must have any. Apparently if there are black snakes in the area, the copperheads will not inhabit the same area.

Friends of ours have 30 acres with a creek that runs through it. They have a number of farm animals. They've seen their share of snakes, and far more than MY share! They tell me that the only snakes on their side of the creek are the non-poisonous black variety, while on the other side of the creek where they hunt turkey and deer, there are copperheads. It seems that snakes have an sense of boundary. I think that's terrific. I'll stay on 'my' side of the line, and hopefully, they will stay on their own side.

I'll save the story of the fireants for another day. Right now I'm going to go watch the sun come up while I drink my coffee.