I’ve always believed that life tends to balance itself out – sometimes over days, sometimes over a lifetime. I never correct anyone who falsely blames me for something I didn’t do unless its particularly egregious, because I know that there will also be times when I’ll get credit for something I had little or no control over. Sometimes its best just to smile and move on and let the natural order of things take care of itself.
Yesterday, nature created its own balance – and in record time. Tuesday was cold and blustery, leaving 8 inches of wet snow in the driveway by the time it was over. But yesterday more than balanced the scales – bright sunshine and clear blue skies framed the new-fallen snow, and there are few combinations in nature’s vista that can match that spectacle.
I had already decided to venture forth, camera in hand, to see what wonders I could record. But before I even had the chance to leave the house, nature served up a bounty of visual riches just outside the window.
It began asa blur of movement caught my eye, drawing me to three deer foraging in the woods only a few feet from the house. I watched as they nuzzled the foliage, gently brushing the snow away from the evergreens in search of a morsel to nibble upon – and leaving a white powdery moustache upon their fur in the process. Methodically they moved through the woods, oblivious to the cars passing on the road just down the hill, the morning sun casting painterly shadows - dappling their coats and the snowy ground around them with random shades of light and dark.
As they slowly moved down into the valley and away from the house, a woodpecker began noisily pounding away on the suet feeder and the chickadees and nuthatches began swarming the seed feeder nearby. I parked with my lens close to the window glass and waited to see what nature had in store for me.
Only moments later, I smiled widely – and knew the day was destined to be memorable. For there, framed perfectly in my lens, was a brilliant red cardinal – an eternal symbol that on the greyest days of winter there is always the promise of the color of summer to come. He lingered for but a moment, but time enough for me to capture his image.
Knowing that the best part of any show I could hope for from this vantage point had already come in the opening act, I packed the camera and headed out for the rest of the day – knowing, no matter what I might find, that nature had already more than repaid any debt from yesterday’s snow with a brilliant day to treasure and remember.