Tumbling out of my thoughts

The other day, far too early for my liking, I was headed off to work yawning and stretching myself awake with each turn of the car tires. 

I pulled over a few streets from home, to drop a card into the mailbox, and in the midst of an almost jaw breaking yawn, I glimpsed a bird passing over head.  I stopped, with my hand on the car door handle, as I watched it fly far above me.  Its long legs were stretched out and back in the style of a dancer in mid leap, its elongated neck and beak reached forward intently, as its wings pulled with grace and strength through the air.

I’d never seen a crane in full flight before.  It was an awakening I very much needed that morning.

Great Blue Heron
picture from the Credit Valley website

I recalled a similar morning, many years ago when I lived further north.  I was working for a small local newspaper—in the advertising department—so there were many days when I would travel between towns looking for business.

This particular day, I was booting along a country road, the windows were open and the sun was warm on my face.  I could hear the spit of the gravel pinging off the under carriage of the car, and I could see the cloud of dust I was leaving in my wake.

I was there, but I wasn’t, as my mind was busy running through business and personal ‘to do’ lists.

In a flash I caught, just out of the corner of my eye, a dark shape lurking at the side of the road.  It seemed to hunker further down on the split rail fence as I flew by.  I slowed, and came to a full stop.  The car hummed like a sewing machine on high speed as I reversed to take a closer look.

It was mid morning, so there was little traffic on the rural side road—just me, and the ugliest bird I had ever seen.

He was large—surprisingly so—I would hold tight to small children and dogs in his presence—his head and neck were naked, with only folds of red, wrinkled skin covering its internal structure.

Turkey vulture
picture from the Oiseaux-birds website

  He stared right at me, unabashed by my close scrutiny, as he met my gaze with more than a touch of arrogance.

I had never seen a turkey vulture before.  There was a dark beauty in his purpose, and his confidence, and I sat there watching him in awe.  With a flick of his eye, he dismissed me as neither a threat nor food, and slowly turned his head to look past me.

I remember thinking, what a great job I have, that I can, during a busy day, come across such a sight!

Through all this, I discovered that it pays to tumble out of your own thoughts once in awhile, that it pays to move a little slower through your days, in order to catch, and hold, every unexpected moment.

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6 Responses to Tumbling out of my thoughts

  1. Aren’t those wake up moments spectacular? A few years ago I was driving with my daughter on one of her precious visits home from Victoria. We were heading north along a country highway when, just ahead, five huge birds flew through the blue over the road and landed in the weedy shrubbery on the left side of the road. In a couple of minutes we had reached the spot and I slowed the car right down. Five turkey heads bobbed along as the turkeys took a purposeful stroll a few feet away from us. I had never seen wild turkeys before. For someone who writes historical fiction this was a glimpse into the past. When we finished gawking and continued on our way, we both felt the residual awe in the car and we breathed again. I was so glad I had shared this with my daughter.

    • Carole-Ann says:

      What a wonderful moment to share with your daughter Elaine! And how true with writing historical fiction this experience would be so helpful. So much to see when we take a moment to pay attention…I have to keep reminding myself of this fact :)

  2. Hey, Carole-Ann! I see you’ve been blogging for a year. Happy Blogiversary, my friend!

    • Carole-Ann says:

      Well thank you Elaine! When I was posting my most recent blog I realized the same…a year, wow! I survived it and am enjoying it, so that’s always a good sign!

  3. Vance says:

    That is very true. And I enjoy that myself living in BC. I forgot how amazing and calming the country life is, well I can’t really forget I was to young to Appreciate the sites of country living when I was so young. Anyways now I see it and just walking Zeus down the side road where I live and being able to just walk up to a fence and pet the beautiful horses and just forget about the stress I was swirling around in my brain two seconds before I placed my hand on that amazing animals head. Not to mention all the nice birds flying around here like the magpie that also just make me smile, the songs they sing seem to just wipe away the negative thoughts from my mind. Still have not seen a turkey Vulture lol
    Good writing as always! Love you xoxoxo

    • Carole-Ann says:

      Hello my BC son :) You always did want to return to the country didn’t you? And I think BC is exactly where you were meant to be, nice how things work out isn’t it? The country sights and sounds work well to take away stress, so take advantage of it and enjoy!

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