Toasting the Micro

IMG-2683I was sitting out enjoying a glass of wine this evening, pre-dinner, all of the busy-ness of the day behind me. Some writing done, the poodle pooped from a game of fetch in the lake, the makings of dinner–roasting garlic and cauliflower for a yummy soup–in the oven. Time to relax.

I try not to let the untended garden bother me too much as I attempt to marvel at what is making an appearance, some small roses, persevering year after year, phlox from God knows when or who. I do some emergency watering but the weeding has gone by the wayside. We live in semi-arid savanna and I know this yet I am forever optimistic that something will grow and flourish, other than scotch thistle which is, even now, wilting. I think cactus may be my next modus operandi. In fact there are the remnants of a cactus farm just south of here.

What struck me though, in all of this glorious growth was the activity. There were bees all over the late season raspberry bush, and a beautiful emerald dragonfly came to rest on my ankle for a moment. There was a spider, you can see in the picture if you squint who was busy building a web as if he were playing a giant base fiddle, up and down the strings. The were other things too, flying and crawling.

I was in Toronto earlier this week to have dinner with my brother and sister and regardless of constant traffic, buildings seeming to go up in an instant, and the constant streams of pedestrians everywhere, the level of activity was nothing compared to what was happening right before my eyes. This country living is a hive of activity. I noticed it when we first moved here. Everyone or everything or every being is quite occupied. There is a family of birds–no idea what–living above one of the screen doors (which we are not using until they spread their wings), an ermine or two under the deck, and the usual bunnies (stepped on a nest of them in the raised bed where the berries weren’t doing so well, so hey, why not grow a bunch of bunnies instead) chipmunks and squirrels.

But it is this microscopic life that hums along as well, supporting things and systems of which I have no idea, pollinating berries I suppose, and performing the most fundamental tasks to keep things working on a macro level so that I can drink my wine and roast my cauliflower and garlic.