Thursday, August 19, 2010

Country Roads, Trains, and Wildlife in a Suburban Garden

Note:  Those of you who were interested in reading about Henrietta Lacks and the HeLa cells may want to check out the comment by Upupaepops on yesterday's post. I also found out from my friend Jane that the book is still on the NY Times Best Seller List. Great!

Today, I'm going to my diabetes support group for the first time since April. Since my social life here is not much to write home about, I'm very happy to be able to drive and go places and see some friends again. I had a lovely day yesterday. I went to my brother-in-law's place in town to do some laundry after I took care of some other things, including a visit to the dump.

As I left the dump, I noticed the view of the wind farms that line the mountains to the east of town. I hope you can see the wind turbines on top of the mountains in the background.

A good thing about country roads, other than the songs they inspire, they are empty. Never did I drive so long without a break job!

You may meet more trains here than you do cars.

This was a long one and must have been a great sight at the Tehachapi Loop. It's too much to explain here, but the Tehachapi Loop is an engineering feat from the 1800s that made it possible for trains to come from the San Joaquin Valley below up the steep mountain to an altitude of 4,000 feet. The loop draws fans from all over the world and it's one of the area attractions that I promised to blog about.

The street my BIL lives on.

As I opened the sliding doors to his lovely garden, I found more wildlife than here at my house in the canyon. But there is an attraction!

I tried to enlarge this beautiful bird. Not a very successful attempt, I know.

The bird sat there for a long time, looking distressed. I think it was more than giving up the food attraction that upset it. I, of course, need some help in identifying this bird. It's smaller than the red-tailed hawk and larger than the kestrel, the two hawks I see in the canyon. It had a dark brown/grey back and wings and a speckled front and rough on top of its legs. Please let me know if you can get a good enough view to identify it. Gorgeous bird and what a treat to see it fly back and forth close by me in the garden.

There were also plenty of hummingbirds. This one is taking a rest.

And ground squirrels.

This one was so cute in the lavender. So what was the attraction?

Apples, apples and more apples. That's what they were all after and so will I be in a month or two. There are two large apple trees and one pear tree in this garden.

How fun a Centigrade and Fahrenheit thermometer! Unfortunately, you can't see how warm it is, so take my word for it: 92F and 33C in the shade. And it felt cool and pleasant in the shade in this garden, so much cooler than here in the canyon where it was at least 100F yesterday. Then the camera batteries ran out, so I have to buy some tomorrow. Can't be without my camera.


Related Posts with Thumbnails