Natural Sightings

On my walk this afternoon, I had three different encounters with nature that resulted in my mouth grinning and my heart lifting:

1)  I instinctively read everything that my eyes see.  Stop signs, cereal boxes, text on the sides of school buses… my mind can’t help but read it all.  So when I passed this yard sign today, I read the message before I saw the message (i.e., the dragonfly perched right on the top-middle of it).  Wonderful.

2)  Trudging up a moderate hill, I was sweating under the rather intense heat of the day (high 80s [F], feels like 90+ in the sunshine) – when I saw my very first peek of the seasonal change that is soon to come.  The contrast between feeling summer and seeing fall was simultaneously jarring and enjoyable.

(Do you see the peek of orange?)

3)  A few minutes from my home, I saw a man (probably in his mid 60s) standing completely motionless on the walking path.  At first I wondered if he was okay, but then I saw him staring at something off to the side of the park.  I approached the scene very slowly, and as I drew closer the man mouthed to me: “hawk” – then motioned his eyes to his left.  I stopped, turned to my right (his left), and on the fence saw a brown-and-white bird – nay, hawk – perched, almost motionless.  I didn’t dare reach for my camera, lest my motion be detected by the hawk and initiate his departure – and end the magical moment.

After two seconds of staring and admiring, the hawk did fly away – and the man and I walked slowly towards one another.  He explained, “That was a young Coopers hawk; they fly low amid the trees looking for mice and other small animals.  Amazing.”

I simply smiled and nodded, grateful to have been able to experience the encounter with someone.

And now, grateful to get to share it with all of you.

(Image courtesy of; but this was exactly what it looked like - fence and all.)


About Stef

A "serious" gal who is trying to remember to lighten up and smile.
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12 Responses to Natural Sightings

  1. Touch2Touch says:

    Those really are special moments, shared with a “wild” creature, something “other.”
    Bears, garter snakes, foxes —
    A hawk so close is unusual!


    • Stef says:

      It was *amazing* how close we got to stand near the hawk. It just watched us, and we just watched it – and it was truly like time stood still. It was wonderful.


  2. I love how you see the world with so much wonder and joy. 🙂


  3. Marie Lisa Jose says:

    I used to ( past tense since I moved back to India and the season change is not as distinct) love the change from Summer to Fall. It is beautiful! All those colors. Thanks for sharing. Also I am inspired by the fact that you carry your camera everywhere. I should learn from you.
    Keep smiling and sharing.



    • Stef says:

      Lisa, to be fair, my camera is my iPhone – and I pretty much don’t go anywhere without it. Prior to having this phone, I never had a camera on me – so this device has done wonders for my blogging! 😉

      I’m fortunate to live in a climate where we get very distinct seasons; and I adore the fall colors.

      Where did you live during your time away from India?


  4. Dodie says:

    That is soooo cool! Seeing a hawk always makes my day . A sharpshin hawk flew right over Mark’s house Saturday afternoon when we were playing with Cooper outside! It is always a treat, even if it is just a glimpse, and getting to see one perched and still like you did is awesome!


    • Stef says:

      I had never seen a hawk before (at least, that I am aware of), so to see one perched, still, for a few continuous seconds is amazing! I might be spoiled now, though… 😉


  5. carlaat says:

    Love the dragonfly, hawk, and fall colors! Once you see one hawk, you may be surprised that you’ll start seeing more, especially perched high in bare trees along the sides of highways in winter. It’s like when you learn a new word! 🙂


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