The corgis and I were cozy and enjoying the warmth of the early morning sun rays streaming into our Airstream Safari trailer as Larry, bundled in a parka, was mesmerized by birds feeding by the Palo Verde tree and the changing glowing colors bathing Whale Mountain. A windy, cold storm had just passed through and brought ice to our dogs’ water bowls. (Baby, it was cold outside.)*
I ventured outside just in time to hear Larry say in a low voice, “Bill… a coyote!” I looked across the park road and saw a very healthy, well-fed looking, beautiful adult coyote staring at Larry.
The coyote then took a look at me and went down through the creosote bushes followed by an adolescent and two pups. The next morning, word spread throughout the campground that someone’s Chihuahua was off leash, chased something near the Nature Trail, yelped and then disappeared, which illustrates why San Diego County Parks require dogs to be closely attended and on 6-foot leashes!
As the sun rose, our campsite warmed and more wildlife emerged, such as the Hairy woodpecker pecking on our Palo Verde.
We brought along our birdseed feeder, but forgot to bring the hummingbird feeder, so we made our own, a wire-suspended glass tumbler filled with nectar (1/4 cup sugar to 1 cup of water) and topped with plastic flowers and a red piece of plastic that attracted the Anna’s hummingbird.
By late morning, the festive sun lit up our holiday table display.
One of the items in this display is an Airstream-shaped pillow covered with a metallic silver lamé fabric that is now eight years old and shedding tiny silver particles that can be seen on the beaded palm tree trunk in the above and last photo of this post. One of these silver specks landed in Larry’s eye, which resulted in a 4-hour visit to our local emergency room for removal upon our return to San Diego. The pillow has now been retired!
Agua Caliente County Park had its own seasonal display in the form of Sweet Acacia, Acacia farnesiana, yellow flower puffs.
The days are now short and the nights have grown long but brightly lit up with our holiday lights.
I especially enjoyed gazing in awe at the peaceful beauty of our hanukkiah (Hanukkah menorah)…*
… and thinking about what’s really important and beautiful in this world (real love).* At this time of year, I also like to revisit the words and last sentence in Chris Van Allsburg’s book, The Polar Express,* “Though I’ve grown old, the bell still rings for me as it does for all who truly believe.”
*This is a link to a YouTube video.