Monday, October 1, 2007

Gratitude Monday: The Wild Dogs Are With Me

The forest on the western edge of town.

I saw a fox yesterday when I went out for a mid-afternoon walk. A red fox lives in the forest at the edge of town and I've seen it from time to time, usually in the evenings.
I thought it was unusual to see it out and about in the day like that, but I don’t know much vulpine lore. It may have been out for its afternoon constitutional, just like me.

It saw me as I saw it. We were both headed southbound so it turned its head to me. For about two full seconds I had a wonderful full side view. I saw its red coat and its dark bushy tail.
I knew better than to move. Sudden movements scare forest critters away. That’s the last thing I wished to do.
It gave me a casual, if guarded, look and went on its way.

I was grateful for our moment together. It reminded me that I live on the edge of a town cut out of bush. Around me I have trees and muskeg, even some fields. A river borders the west.

I’m thankful for the convenience of town and the closeness of the wild. Some mornings, when I am out early enough, I hear the coyotes singing to the moon.

I grew up with this sound. Howls can be eerie and they made me shiver. It scared me then, but I miss it now. I’m glad I get to hear it now and again, and I’m grateful the wild dogs are still with me.


Dawn said...

What a wonderful thing to happen. We don't have any type of wild dog in NZ (in fact, the only native mammal we have are seals - that's why some of our bird life has struggled) but years ago in Australia I camped in the outback and heard dingos calling at night. Magical and eerie.

Leah J. Utas said...

Yes, it was wonderful.
I didn't know NZ had no wild dogs. Interesting.
I haven't heard dingoes in the wild, but I saw them at a Melbourne area zoo. When they saw me they started howling.
I say it's a compliment.

Anonymous said...

Gratitude Monday. I am oh so very grateful that this day is in the bag, as they say (sorry, I know I'm not Hilary!) We finally got all of our hay home and stacked - thank the powers that be for good neighbours who will give up their whole day to help!
The coyotes howl around here on a regular basis - sometimes it sounds as though they are right under the bedroom window, which they very well may be! Our poor dog tries to mimic them, or perhaps really is communicating with them, but she sounds quite amusing at times. It always sends a shiver down my spine to hear them. I'm grateful to be able to live where I can hear the wild things.

Leah J. Utas said...

Bag Lady - The coyotes seemed awfully close to my bedroom window back on the farm. Glad I'm not the only one who got shivers from the sound.

Reb said...

Wow, what a great experience! We have coyotes come up the river valley here in the city, but they don't howl much. It sure is freaky to see them in the back yard of the apt complex though! I could understand it if I were closer to the edge of the city, maybe.