I was so excited when I first spotted these eggs in the Rhododendron out in front of my house. I checked the eggs out every day for a while and couldn’t wait to show my Grandsons, who, at the time were about 5 and 7.
I took them outside, lifted them each up high enough to get a good look, and then we went back in the house to have the inevitable discussion about the problems of keeping the nestlings as pets once they hatched.
The next day, the youngest came running up all excited…”They HATCHED, Gramma!!”
Uh oh. I knew they couldn’t have yet, but when we went outside to check things out, there were the broken egg shells all over the ground.
I lied. Well, I agreed with them when, already heartbroken about the whole “no pet” thing, they concluded the baby Robins had flown away to a happy life in the sky.
I felt awful, for the tragedy (though as an adult, I can almost grasp the whole food chain thing in Nature) but also because I had lied.
A few days later I was reading about the habits of our local Steller Jays, about how smart they are. These cousins of the Crow have figured out how to watch other animals, especially human ones, as they discover and then repeatedly return to, a nest full of eggs….
Not only did I lie to my grandsons. Apparently I was also responsible for the discovery and destruction of those beautiful eggs!
Now I REALLY felt awful!
No Gold Star for this Grandmother today!
I have my own photo of Steller Jays somewhere but can’t find them right now. The above image was listed online as free.
But clearly they were from Houston and recognizable as such to many Southern folks. They are gorgeous! (Don’t get me wrong, there are some pretty gorgeous people from Natchez and they have their own social hierarchy!)
I have to say the Bishop who performed the ceremony was great and quite a good sport. In the pre-wedding interview with my cousin and his intended, the Officiant did his job well. Knowing these two were not practicing Mormons, he had to tactfully discover the nature of what the bride would be wearing. There are pretty specific standards in the Mormon church about what the bride can wear in her wedding…legs, arms, neck and shoulders are to be tastefully covered. I wish I could have seen his face when my new cousin-in-law described her lovely, Houstonian, strapless, designer gown. Bless his heart, somehow he worked it all out, maybe even in honor of my Aunt, long gone now, but a well-known member of this church…who knows.
The wedding task, assigned me by my cousin, as his only relative present for the ceremony, was to choose a short reading.
My self-imposed task was to say something leading up to the reading that might bring these three groups together. YIKES…but, I love a good challenge. I really wanted to do this right! My cousin is much more like a brother to me. I lived with him, his brother, and my aunt and uncle for many years when I was young. They became my immediate family.
I have officiated at several weddings myself and I know that nothing brings a group together faster than shared laughter, but I had to do some research because I did not want to be disrespectful to the LDS wedding guests who came primarily because they loved my cousin’s mother. My Aunt had a big hand in starting the Mormon Church there in Natchez years ago and these people still remember her! I wanted to make sure it was proper to laugh out loud, to applaud, and to rebel yell in a Mormon “Meeting House”…not that I could have stopped my cousin’s longtime Natchez friends from cheering at the end…He is 68 years old and this is his first marriage so this was a Big Deal!
I guess my research paid off because apparently the short comments I made before the reading were a hit. At the reception, at least one member of each of the three distinct groups gave me positive feedback on what I said during the ceremony.
Anyway, the whole thing went off without a hitch…Well, except there was that mix-up about who got to use the limo from Dunleith to the Mormon Meetinghouse, the Houstonians or the Bridal Party. The out of town guests were all staying in one of Natchez most famous Antebellum Mansions, and the Hummer Limo was the transportation to the church.
lighting in the Mansion’s rooms
That was a slightly stressful 15 minute wait for the Bride’s arrival, but she and her beautiful maids showed up and the ceremony was short, sweet, and as predicted, raucous at the end!!
The reception was lovely also. Again, in memory of my Aunt and Uncle, it was held in our childhood home. Beautiful string quartet, fantastic food and the successful blending of those three fairly distinct groups for an evening to remember! My aunt, uncle and other cousin would have been thrilled to see the transformation in their home, especially given the reason for it.
All in all, an amazing ending to the Natchez part of our trip. We piled in the car the next morning, bright and early, heading for home!
So the theme this week is Scale and apparently it was already a favorite of mine. No surprise as the instructions were filled with the word “perspective”. That, of course, really caught my eye, and reminded me of so many photos I have taken over the years showing the scale of something from differing perspectives..
Here are just a few.
I have a collection of little trains. This is the, by far, the smallest.
Series of shots showing the scale of shells found in Fiji.
And last, but certainly not least, one of my favorite all-time posts from one of my favorite all-time bloggers, Mr. Badfish himself…
Well, I’m running down the road
tryin’ to loosen my load
I’ve got seven women on
Four that wanna own me,
Two that wanna stone me,
One says she’s a friend of mine
Take It easy, take it easy
Don’t let the sound of your own wheels
drive you crazy
Lighten up while you still can
don’t even try to understand
Just find a place to make your stand
and take it easy
Well, I’m a standing on a corner
in Winslow, Arizona
and such a fine sight to see
It’s a girl, my Lord, in a flatbed
Ford slowin’ down to take a look at me
Come on, baby, don’t say maybe
I gotta know if your sweet love is
gonna save me
We may lose and we may win though
we will never be here again
so open up, I’m climbin’ in,
so take it easy
Well I’m running down the road trying to loosen
my load, got a world of trouble on my mind
lookin’ for a lover who won’t blow my
cover, she’s so hard to find
Take it easy, take it easy
don’t let the sound of your own
wheels make you crazy
come on baby, don’t say maybe
I gotta know if your sweet love is
gonna save me, oh oh oh
Oh we got it easy
We oughta take it easy
Bright and early on the day before we were to leave Natchez, Mississippi for home, we took the Toyota van in for an oil change and return-road-trip check up. We expected this to be a quick, hour long process as we were booked solid with last minute wedding preparations for my cousin’s nuptials and reception that evening.
After some time waiting they came and told us we needed a new radiator, that this one was shot and that it was leaking coolant everywhere. News to us as we had seen no leaks and had had no problems. They showed us the huge puddle of coolant under the car and the supposed damage to the radiator.
There’s a saying that applies to men, about certain body parts being held in such a way as to trap said man.
I don’t know what the comparable saying is for women…”they had me by the ovaries“???
But anyway, clearly the radiator was NOW hemorrhaging fluid so we had to agree to a new one…which they of course, had in stock, right? So they said anyway. After waiting a few more hours of crucial wedding errand time, they finally informed us that the new radiator had to come from Vicksburg, a mere hour and 25 minutes away. So they gave us a loaner car.
Right up until their closing time, which coincided exactly with the wedding start time, they still had not received the new radiator. This was no small deal. We had to make the trip from Mississippi back home to Washington to arrive on a very specific date. This delay could mean the difference between safe driving each day of our 4 day trip, with a nice sleep over in a motel…or driving straight through, pretending we were in our 20’s when we could actually pull off that sort of thing!
It all worked out but was definitely touch and go, and very stressful.
Even though it felt like we were in a hidden camera episode of 20/20 or 60 minutes, busting unethical mechanics who break your stuff and then make you pay, it was hard to be mad at the place since during the waiting time, the service manager approached me in a panic having just found a tiny feathered intruder that had knocked itself out flying against the huge windows in the waiting room. She asked if I could help her by holding it for a minute. (Did I have a SIGN on my forehead or something? The number one thing on my Bucket list?? “Hold a Hummingbird!”)
When we finally had to go, I put the little guy in a box and set it outside in the sunshine. Sure enough, fortified by rest and homemade nectar, the tiny intruder flew up, up and away! I can still feel those tiny feet in my hand.