Tuesday, April 20, 2021

It's Quiet on this Night

 Jax and I laid on the porch above the steps for awhile tonight. I put the head lamp on red so the bugs which have just started to show up don't get us. I saw the first ringtail because of my headlamp I saw little red eyes looking down at us so it was hot dog time to feed and Kit@Kaboodle. Soon the feeding nights that so many reviews mention will be back. Many will be pregnant and they'll show up at dark dark to make sure they don't miss a meal. What is now a 24 hot dog night will consistently be in the 40s to 60s and occasionally above 80. They'll all show up at the same time and guests will sit on the porch and marvel at how close they can get as they meet the ringtail, skunk, fox, and raccoon all coming to the porch. It will be good to see all my friends at one time again and they'll be introducing new friends to the world of the porch as they have their babies. I've hardly seen them over the winter. 

Was a busy day for the Wind Caves as traffic converged from all directions. They have grown more popular with time.

The crickets are more and will continue to increase until mid summer. When I first moved here no matter what the temperature I left my window to my room cracked. I didn't know what was out here and hearing the crickets all night was soothing. It was only when they'd stop I'd wake up and think "What is here that the crickets don't know?" Shortly they'd resume and I'd drift back to sleep.

As the summer wore on there would be a few less crickets each night. Some of the ones I knew by their call would be gone. Who is killing the crickets? It's not the fence lizards, they're too small. I've never seen a side blotched lizard munch on a cricket because they exist at different times of the day. Then one day hiking up Hurrah Pass with Kobae, Kobae pulled into the shade. Just a couple feet from us a whiptail lizard came and sat in the sand. He moved a little bit here and there, partly in shade, partly in sun, that doesn't make sense. Then she started digging and I learned their bellies are sensitive to movement in the ground, like ground radar. She dug up a cricket and ate it. How am I so confident it was a she, because they all are. They replicate themselves even simulating the act with another female producing an unfertilized egg that morphs into themselves. I think Jax's happiest place is on top of the Wind Caves.

If there's no wind and you start at the cliffs to the left side of the caves it will bounce to the right side and you can get seven to nine echos.

The crickets make a comeback in the fall and there are a few each night as the nemesis of the whiptails stalk and hunt them in the warm months and in time the leopard lizards get most all of them and the crickets will survive to return for another year.
There is so much more time for this night. I wish I could enjoy them all. However the days are long and there is much to do. When the remodeling was over there were lots of extra mattresses and no place to store them so I took all the queens in my room, got rid of the frame, and just stacked queen mattresses on top of each other until I almost have to get a run at the bed to get in it and yet it's comfortable. I'm tired. I use to imagine my feet and legs relaxing and then sleeping and then working my way up relaxing everything until it came to my brain and I'd relax it and be asleep immediately. Now the days are so busy and the work so much that each evening when I hit the sheets it's almost instantly relaxing and asleep. I sigh it feels so good. A little tingle that the body and the mind will get to rest. 
Kobae sometimes pees, always in threes. Sometimes he poops. Sometimes he lets a third liquid out and that's his reserve. Should be ever run out of food he has a reserve to get him through. He only releases it if he's comfortable, knows where his next meal is coming from and has little stress in his life. I created something like that when I go to bed at night. The body and the mind relax but I know the dark is full of shadows. Somewhere tucked into a crevice there is a part of the body and the brain that it is their time to work. They listen, they taste, they hear, they feel. They detect the crickets not chirping and a hundred other things that they've listed as significant to monitor while the rest of the body and mind sleep. Through the night I know that's a fox eating out of the bowl, a raccoon scraping against a water can, a vehicle going to Wind Caves at 2am, I'm alerted to all of these by the night shift. They are diligent.

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