A break in the soaking and a compendum of critters


This "free-range" rooster gave me a wary look. I stayed in the truck and grabbed him with a long lens. Back in the day, we would have called him a "yardbird," in lieu of the yuppified "free range chicken" designation.

This “free-range” rooster gave me a wary look reserved for interlopers who threaten his hens. I stayed in the truck and grabbed him with a long lens. Back in the day, we would have called him a “yard-bird,” in lieu of the yuppified “free range chicken” designation.

rain soaked camellia

Click the soaked camellia for  more pix and comments.

The drought conditions we groused about several months ago are now reversed here in LA (lower Arkansas). My friend Michael Stubblefield, a transmogrified Arky residing in Seattle would feel right at home. That is, once he made the adjustment to the fact that here one sees a plethora of service stations peddling fried chicken versus the plethora of Starbucks one observes in Seattle.

All that said, this last Saturday was generally a Seattle soaker. Even so, I found some lurking visual opportunities here on the Dempsey premises between cloud bursts. You can see these and peruse the attendant commentary on the Photo of The Week page at Corndancer dot-com.

A break in the soaker came in the afternoon, so bitten with a bad case of cabin fever, I ventured out to see what I could see. Turns out, a few critters had the same idea. One round trip down a short stretch of country road at the outskirts of my fair city yielded unexpected and welcome results manifested as chickens, cows, and horses.

Free range rooster

This rooster was in the same location as the rooster above. He gave me the same suspicious look. I stayed in the truck.

Just across the road from the chickens, cattle were chowing down on a convenient hay smorgasbord in the middle of their pasture. The diners included a Texas longhorn, but unfortunately he was on the far side of the feeding station so we only got a glimpse of his impressive horns.

Cows at hay feeding station.

Across the road from the chickens, cattle munch out on hay. The calf probably probably still visits his mother’s milk supply. Notice the horn on the Texas longhorn on the far side of the feeding station.

Not long after I left the cattle, I was beginning to think I was going to run out of critters when I noticed a some horses grazing in a pasture a couple of hundred yards off the road. I kept going and noticed that the batteries in one camera were running low so I stopped to make the change. While I was fiddle-faddling with the batteries, unbeknown to me, the horses began to demonstrate a tendency shared by most pampered horses. They came to a stopped pickup. As a result, I would up with a close shot of a friendly pony.

I think this horse would have stuck his or her head in the truck had not the gate been closed between us. The horse came a long way to make the visit while I was changing batteries in one of my cameras.

I think this horse would have stuck his or her head in the truck had not the gate been closed between us. The horse came a long way to make the visit while I was changing batteries in one of my cameras.

Some days, you just get lucky. The idea is to let those days outnumber the others. I’m still working on that. I suspect you are doing the same.

Thanks,
Joe Dempsey

Weekly Grist for the Eyes and Mind.

http://www.joedempseyphoto.com/
http://www.joedempseycommunications.com/
http://www.corndancer.com/joephoto/photohome.html

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A sign of other times


This sign  and its terminology have fallen to disuse. The old sign, on Arkansas Highway 5 near Hot Springs AR, however, at the height of its glory was the amalgamation of some specialized artistic and mechanical skill sets hard to find today. The original story on this sign started on the Corndancer dot com Photo of the Week page. Click here to go there (a very cool thing to do) and see another picture of the sign and a short treatise on how these signs came to be.

The sign reads, "Colonial Nursing Home for Aged and Invalids." The sign has outlasted the nursing home.

The sign reads, "Colonial Nursing Home for Aged and Invalids." The sign has outlasted the nursing home, which is nowhere in sight.

Earlier on the trip, I encountered this barn on Arkansas Highway 5 south of Benton AR, a familiar landmark to local commuters. There are several other equally interesting barns on this picturesque stretch of road.

Barn on Arkansas Highway 5, south of Benton AR

Barn on Arkansas Highway 5, south of Benton AR

An hour or so later, driving west on Arkansas Highway 298, I saw this old barn. Next to it was a nice two-story home. Most residents with barns such as this on their property consider them to be outdoor museum pieces and simply “leave them be.”

Barn on Arkansas HIghway 298 West of Hot Springs Village AR.

Barn on Arkansas HIghway 298 West of Hot Springs Village AR.

Not too much further down Highway 298  I found this old residence, now relegated as a decorative part of a pasture. It reminded me of a pasture softball game when I was a child. Everything was going fine until my neighbor friend, Billy Jameson slid into what he thought was third base. The game broke up shortly after that untoward and unfortunate slide. Billy was a key player and keeping him downwind was not working well with our game strategy.

The dark object in the lower right hand side of the image is not third base.

The dark object in the lower right hand side of the image is not third base.

My apologies for the brevity of the story this week.

Thanks for dropping by,

Joe