Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Max Patch

What better place for kids than out in the sun, wind, and hills, with nothing between them and the sky?
Leisa & I (and the kids + Polly) finally made it up to Max Patch, up near the Tennessee border, after our failed picnic attempt there in June while hiking the AT. The 1000 acre bald has views 360 degrees around, you can probably see what--4 states? We hunkered down low to stay out of the cold wind--yes, it is fall!--and experimented with musical notes on the ocarina and Leisa's new flute.

Alexander's Ford

This little section of earth, at a bend in the Green River, is home to part of the Overland Victory Trail--and Tom made a great guide--shaking a tree so that plump fox grapes rained on Polly like candy from a pinata... Sunday was my second visit to Alex's Ford, and a dip in the muddy, cold Green was worth it, as usual. A sunny, clear-light day--welcome after the deluge of the past week.
When I was here in the spring the river was the color of pale emeralds, clear and swift. Gotta get the bee in here--as usual, oblivious to cameras, photographers, anything besides completing the summer's work.

Monday, September 21, 2009

There's so much to say

Where to start? Today is the International Day of Peace.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Green River floodplain

Below the Green River narrows, fields stretch out, full of savvy, slithering snakes, (possibly) purple martins--or simply chimney swifts--and, of course, a profusion of plants. Here's Professor Ferguson with Alphonse, checking something or other out...
This is the flower that precedes the pods in the last post:
Swimming in the Green--occasional two-leggeds floating past on round inflatables and plastic kayaks. Fun to swim against the current and not get anywhere! (Sorry, I had put the camera away before jumping in...)

persimmons and paw paw

These pods were full to bursting, and pop when squeezed--with tiny seeds in the big bubble. Tom called the plant American Lotus, before realizing it is actually Crotolaria spectabilis, or Rattlebox. Below that, I ate this persimmon from the tree thinking it would be as ripe as the sweet one I had just eaten, but it made my lips pucker and my tongue go all dry. Yech. Isn't it pretty, though? Lots of unripe fruit on the tree, must plan a trip back for them, and for promising amounts of paw paw--the native papaya/banana like fruit. Tricky to harvest--it's ripe for a very small window of time and then it's mush. And look--can you see that butterfly's proboscis?