Sublime Sunshine; Duck Therapy Anyone?

Every morning I step out of the house and walk the paths through the woods, I realize how fortunate I am to be able to live in this spot, tucked away, surrounded by woodland. And yesterday was sublime, not a cloud in the sky, a crisp, cool morning, with dew draping the redwood leaves. For such giants, redwood trees have the softest, most delicate leaves. They are like trees with tender green feathers.

There is no escaping that the summers are becoming hotter and dryer. The alders are dying and the question is what trees to plant in their stead. Trees that will thrive in our warming climate. Sequoia come to mind. The ones we planted more than ten years ago are rather stately trees now. If we plant a grove of sequoia, in three to four hundred years, tourists will line up at the gate to have the chance to walk through a remarkable grove of sequoia three hundred feet tall.

Some of the maples are already turning their brilliant crimson fall hues.

In the garden, spiders abound. It is such a peaceful place, yet it is the killing field of countless insects, snared in gossamer spider silk, and sucked dry by stinging fangs.

Out towards the cabin, white daisies of summer are now black heads, in a way they are more stunning now than when they were at their snowiest white.

Koromo-Hime 衣姫 was out at the cabin, all by herself. She is a most adventurous hen, roaming far out into the woods on her own. She is also one of the loudest of the hens. When she lays an egg, she lets the world know about her accomplishment. Sometimes she is so loud I rush out to the chicken coop to see what danger has befallen the chickens, only to find out that it’s just her, carrying on about her egg.

Yesterday will be memorable for a near tragedy. I moved the Welsh Harlequin ducklings out into the garden hoop house. Their chicken mother hen was ready to be relieved of her motherly duties, and the ducklings had spent a night on their own. It was time for the ducklings to go live with another duck.

I was wondering if they were too young to go swimming yet, but saw them paddling contentedly in the water tank we have in the hoop house for the ducks to swim in. Until I noticed that one of the ducklings was submerged with only its head above the water. I rushed out and pulled a nearly lifeless duckling out of the water tank. I dashed back into the house to get a hair dryer, and slowly, as I dried the duckling and warmed its body, it came back to life, until after an hour of careful tending, it stood up, and went running over to its siblings.

The water tank is drained and out of the hoop house for now. When the ducklings have fully feathered, I’ll set it up again so they can swim.

Spending that time tending to the duckling impressed on me what remarkable creatures ducks are. They are resilient, and possess an intellect that is remarkable for such a small creature, and a sense of humor that brightens any day. I could see where duck therapy could become a thing. An hour with a duck could easily be more beneficial than spending an hour with a human therapist picking apart your feelings. A duck will cut through all that mind-crud in minutes. After an hour with a duck, you’ll go home wondering what you were fussing about before.

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