A Gekko's Watch

Holding on with sticky pad feet outside my door, the vigilant gekko prepares for an active evening. The ones that live outside my door in South Florida come alive at night. They hover near the lights where moths and other insects are drawn. As I walk up the apartment steps, I see about one gekko on watch per door. They work alone and are apparently territorial.

In a cold snap, gekkos will try to get into the house to wait for the air to warm outside. It doesn’t happen very often, but I keep watch to make sure they get out of the house alive. One time, I was sure that a gekko watched my steps and ran out along side me as I opened the door to leave. That’s when it first occurred to me that these reptiles had more intelligence than I gave them credit for.

Image by Clker-Free-Vector-Images on Pixabay

The city possum

opossumLast night, I saw an opossum lurking in front of the apartment’s dumpster. At first glance, it looked like a cat. In our city, we have the Sawgrass Nature Center and Wildlife Hospital to help sick or injured wildlife. This little marsupial looked rather healthy, however.

Kindness to animals is a good habit to cultivate and share with children. Building designs for cohabitation are a worthwhile effort. Being employed in the “build” industry has increased my awareness.

I hope to learn more about this precious animal and its contribution to our natural world. Check out links below.

Sawgrass Nature Center in Coral Springs:  http://www.sawgrassnaturecenter.org.

Opossum Society of the United States: http://www.opossumsocietyus.org.

 

Nature Mural

img_1021On the grounds of the Coral Springs Museum of Art, a 7,000-tile ceramic relief mural graces the grounds. Created by clay artist Jan Kolenda, and dedicated in 2012, it is titled “Imagine Florida.” One side depicts the ocean reef to the beach; side two highlights the hardwood hammocks to the Everglades. It is designed as a scroll, and two quotations grace an end:

“There are no other Everglades in the world. They are, they have always been, one of the unique regions of the earth; remote, never wholly known.” – Marjory Stoneman Douglas.

“Wilderness to me is a spiritual necessity.” – Clyde Butcher.

everglades new.JPG

Soft places imagined

winter-652726_640Sitting on a large rock, the young girl felt the warmth in the middle of winter. Snow-tipped juniper bushes touched the cottony snow mounds. Grey branches rose high above her head. The small berries on the juniper tree were lovely to see. Soon, the girl found it irresistible to jump with wild abandon in the juniper bushes laying low to the ground. She was careful not to break the boughs.

Soon cold, she went home and changed her clothes. A flannel shirt and some hot tomato soup warmed her body. The pleasure of that day has never left her. When life is too busy, hard, unrewarding and hard to live, her mind returns to that day. Perhaps her pinnacle experience happened at around ten years of age.

When I encourage others to find a peaceful and happy place in their minds, it’s a bit like asking them to get their flannel on. Joy is being able to find (or find again) a place or thought that lights a fire inside of us. Some days it may inspire us to big things. Other times, it provides embers enough to live another day.

My blog will touch on experiences like this. Show me that I’m not alone. If we can each find our inner flannel, we can help others find theirs. Along the way, notice the birds that sing, the trees that shade you, the water that glistens and the blue skies that are limitless.

(Pixabay photo)