Tuesday, April 28, 2009

First wild berries of the Year

Living out here in the middle of nowhere can be a pain in the ass sometimes. The drive to town takes twenty minutes, rain means muddy sloppy roads, and don't even get me started on the unbelievable number of bugs.

There is an upside though. Today driving home from my kid's preschool, we took a long slow drive down the muddy sloppy dirt road. As we drove along, she was looking out the window. When she saw a wildflower she wanted, I would get out the car and pick it for her. She was making a bouquet for my wife. Along the way, she would keep an eye out for the bright red unripe dewberries that grow wild all over here. Somewhere among them I could find one or two that had become ripe and she could eat them straight off the vine.
If we still lived in Las Vegas, the ride home would be us sitting in traffic for a half-hour on West Sahara.
Our blueberry bushes have finally gotten a few berries. In between the rains, I water them with the rainwater I have been collecting. The owners of the blueberry farm we go to told me that what I needed was lots and lots of water, so I have been trying to keep them really wet this year.

We have had a lot of these moments, driving home from school or grandma's house.
Once we stopped right at the mailbox at the turnoff to our house--that's where we turn off the (dirt) county road and head down our own (dirt) road--and there was a big turtle in front of us. The kids and I got out and walked over to take a look. We see small turtles quite often, but this one's shell was about the size of a large dinner plate. When we walked up to the turtle, he didn't move or tuck his head inside. He didn't act scared at all. My older daughter hunkered down and got pretty close to it. She looked up and asked if she could feel its shell. I told her sure, just pet its back, away from its head. Well, as God as my witness, I was under the impression that turtles are slow. That thing whipped around and snapped at her so fast I couldn't believe it. I nearly kicked the thing into the ditch to keep her from getting bitten, but she pulled her hand away just in time. I guess that's why it wasn't scared. It knew something that I didn't know.
Just goes to show you that, here in the country, I always find that what I think I know is totally wrong. But don't tell my wife.

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