These are bird photos my dad took last fall, when I was on the east coast helping navigate my mom’s last few weeks of life. I went back again this month, to celebrate dad’s 95th birthday and help with taxes. He was happy I was there for the taxes. I was happy I was there for his birthday. We both found our way to happy.
This trip was a lot colder. Snow. Ice. Few people. I forgot how beautiful winter can be, and how powerful nature is, with the cold and wind, especially when you’re in a rural place. My fingers only lasted a few minutes outside of my gloves, trying to take pictures. I’m a wuss; I kept wondering how quickly frostbite can happen. My fingers got that painful numb feeling, but no frostbite. I was breathing into my gloves to warm them up.
I walked on the frozen lake; I stayed close to shore but felt brave, until I heard the ice crack. I know my face revealed my sudden panic. The ice cracks a lot; it sings and moans and sounds alive. But it was solid.
First time I’ve made a snowman in decades. I felt like a kid; lost track of time; felt giddy. When I walked back to the house after being gone for 45 minutes, I found dad outside, peering down the road, wondering where I was, given I’d told him I was going out for a short walk. Some things don’t change just because we grow up.
Photos: Dad and Walk the Goats