Transformation

For most of the time I’ve been here, what is called the “creek” has just been dry ground. On the rare occasions that it rained though, some puddles formed. When it began to rain more frequently, the puddles lasted longer and then turned to mud.

dry “creek”

About two weeks ago, there was a big windstorm and at least one tree fell. (There are pictures related to that incident in my last post.) Since then, friends and I have speculated that one fallen tree might have pulled others over as it tumbled.

Last week it rained heavily. The next time I pulled up the blinds, I had the view below of the creek. I couldn’t believe my eyes. This time it looked more like a lake.

If it hadn’t stopped raining the water likely would have soon gone over the embankment and probably would have made it to my building.

The water was significantly down by the afternoon. I could see ducks, along with a brown animal, playing in the water. When I looked at the brown animal, the word mongoose came to my mind.

I found a picture of a mongoose on the internet. The brown animal could have been a mongoose, but it could also have been something else.

(I’m not wearing glasses regularly nowadays because they fog up when I am wearing a mask and if I have any screen time on the laptop or phone my eyes get blurry so my eyesight is almost never clear.)

The next day the creek was back to just mud and puddles. More logs and branches were visible and they were closer to me. I suspect some had been submerged when I last looked and had become visible again when the lake turned to mud.

Also, it was possible that other trees had fallen in the storms and maybe there was running water under the still water. If so, tree parts may have been washed downstream and were caught here when the creek became mud again.

back to mud and puddles

Snap, Crackle, Pop

When I was contemplating a title for this post, the words snap, crackle, and pop came to my mind. These were the mascots for Rice Crispies when I was growing up. They probably still are. The three words seemed like a fitting title.

A few days ago, at dusk, I heard a loud crack outside my window. I don’t remember if I looked outside then or not.

I rarely wear my glasses now, since I often am wearing a mask. And besides, it was getting dark. So even if I had looked outside, I probably would not have seen what had happened.

Two days later, when I looked out the window during the day, it was obvious what had caused the loud cracking sound. A large tree had fallen. It had broken into numerous pieces and landed in what will become a creek once there is more rain.

The Wonders of Nature

I love photographing decaying trees. This tree hasn’t fallen yet, but I suspect that will happen sometime this year.

Many years ago, I snapped a picture of a crow in this tree. I still remember how delighted I was when I saw how it turned out. I was even more fascinated, when I realized that I could see it as a photo of a crow, or as a photo of a person reaching for the sky, a person who has a crow perched on one hand.

Crow

The tree will continue to serve nature after it falls.  My friend Jayanand once told me:

Downed trees play an important role in maintaining the health and regeneration of forests. Not only do they provide nutrient pools for other plants during stand regeneration, they often even serve as “nurse logs” which support the germination and growth of other trees by providing substrate, moisture and nutrients to the seedlings and young saplings.  They also can act as carbon sinks by locking up carbon in the forest floor – instead of being released into the atmosphere by burning. Decaying wood provides habitat for a variety of plants and animals, adding to the diversity of life found in forested areas. Finally, downed woody material can also help prevent runoff and soil erosion.

I look forward to having this tree in my life for years to come.