Ah, they’ve finally come out, those most gigantic, most frightening of all wasps I’ve seen in the world–and also one of the most beautiful of any insect species–a flying chunk of azurite, the Tarantula Hawk Pepsis grossa. “Look upon me, and be still,” one says in the voice like the sound of a not very distant helicopter as he lazily swings past me on the shore of The Stockpond.
Jackrabbits in gentle pairs, trios or quartets, as opposite creatures from the formidable Pepsis wasps as could ever have come to be on this Earth, come to graze every sunset now on deeply growing bermudagrass just inside the double-gate entrance of #1 Pasture. They become so used to my coming and going at this time of day, when they’re feasting at the only buffet left open in town, that they do not move off as I walk right through them in my chore of opening a riser that in the night will freshen up their salads. I squeek at them and they look squarely at me with no fear that I can read. They are downright friendly, and somehow it feels that they know I’ve got something to do with providing them this luxurious meal. Actually they’re probably just acting through a wild desperation by this point in the Long Hot Foresummer when most all else for miles around us is left a cinder.