Same bench, same tree I wrote about in June of 2012, although no crow. I've since learned the tree is a Cypress. All its branches lean off east southeast, because the wind comes constantly from the west and the geography funnels it into this spot. That tree has been leaning into the wind for years.
Off to my right there are clutches of stubby palm trees, the kind with the leaves that glow silver in late afternoon light. Between these and some others, I've discovered there's nothing more beautiful than green leaves against a blue sky. It's specially beautiful with our palm trees (what must it be like in Tahiti!) but the great thing about it is it works anywhere, with whatever kind of tree you have.
Just because I didn't bring any snacks this time, a squirrel comes down and almost stands on my shoe, making eye contact as he prods me for the peanuts I used to carry. I used to carry them in a little zippered compartment in a fatigue hat I had to wear when my hair left and my head would get cold.
For several months I didn't go to the bench at all, or do much of anything else, either. It's only recently that I've begun again; I'm feeling better, and it's hard to resist our Southern California weather.
I wonder if the squirrel remembers me from those months ago, or if he solicits anyone who sits on that particular bench. If it's the latter, I hope I'm not responsible; it's not the healthiest thing for a small animal around here to be too incautious around people. We have some cranks here; people who don't like animals and resent the change in the law that compelled them to permit them. They'd banned them for the first 30 years of this senior development. Never could understand people who don't like animals.
We, by contrast, have just adopted a cat. He looks like one of our previous cats, a longhair female, but this time there's beef under the fluff. Mollie felt more like a bird when you picked her up, all hollow bones and feathers; Squiggles (he came from the shelter with that moniker) is a solid welterweight.
It's my blog and I'm allowed to ramble, but there ought to be some kind of useful message buried in there if anyone is nice enough to read it. There are two: (1) I'm open for business; but more importantly, (2) If you get sick, don't get discouraged; it can be beaten.