This morning’s walk took me back around the pond. It was dark when I left the house. Orion and his dog were still visible in the southwest. The streets were quiet except for the distant growl of traffic on the four-lane. By the time I got to the water, the earth had rolled over toward the sun enough that I could see the silhouettes of a few wild ducks. Their quacking sounded like they were laughing at hilarious jokes. A whisper of breeze came up and rippled the top of the pond until it looked like wrinkled stainless steel. I startled a flock of Canada geese and they took off with a lot of honking and flapping. More ducks joined their comedian friends, their wings whistling as the circled in for a landing. The trumpeter swans had moved on. Down at the water’s edge I heard a quiet splash as a muskrat dove for cover. Further along there was a quiet rustle as a white tail doe and her adolescent fawn bounced over some brush and retreated waving their tails like surrender flags. There were more bird calls along the river. By the time my path circled back, the wind had picked up and carried the sounds of the town waking up.
It is times like these that make me think that wearing headphones during a morning walk is like holding your nose in a pastry shop.