December 11, 2013

The news comes from Flagstaff that it’s four degrees below zero there … low 20s here in our mesquite bosque. Who would think of living north of the Gila? Here this far from The Rim at least, it seems there are creatures of interest abroad even if the nights are subfreezing: Sulfur Butterflies are on the wing, and a couple of dragonflies, and even a diehard katydid.

Pat and I saddle up and ride the high ridges of the A-7 Ranch on the West side of the San Pedro, from which we can take in a splendid view of our rangelands, and of neighbors’ homesteads. The afternoon is delightful, and we’re not the only ones who think this: a large rattlesnake is enjoying the friendly Sun of Winter and its balm, and we riders and horses have to step carefully around the snake’s stretched out and lazing body. Rattlesnake is very much awake, and isn’t there when we come on back through the spot now under a late afternoon 3/4 Moon, a pale island like something mythical, floating and Polynesian, just offshore of the canyon rim above us.