Saturday, January 14, 2012

Critters around us keeping busy at Long Ridge Farm, NH

When arriving at new places after having put your chair, your bag, your glue stick in place on the table set up for you it is time to look around.
The setting for the colour theory workshop was the lambing barn for Nancy's ewes. It had rafters and a metal roof, a very clean gravel floor and with a wall only half way up on the south side of the barn lots of air and light coming in.






And there was something else. Mr. and Mrs Robin had found the most special place to nest - a spot with a view, protected from wind and rain and .... sun - well the direct rays only, for the heat under the rafters would have been just as intense if not higher than the rest of the room during the warmest times of the day.
The babies were fairly new still. About midway through their life in the nest anyways.
The babies, or almost fledglings I suppose we could call them, could not go anywhere. Their daily movements consisted of up and down head bobbing and loud calling when really supper, lunch, or snack should have been presented to them at least three minutes ago. According to their internal clocks that is!
Mr. and Mrs. Robin on the other hand were constantly on the go. Finding worms, bugs of any kind, balancing all the tidbits in their beaks and ..... then they encountered an enormous dilemma.
There were 11 women in the barn, most with bent heads - some mumbling to themselves,  others conversing with their table partners and some being quiet except for hands moving back and forth over the tables fishing in piles of colour for the right speck to place here or there on the chart at hand with the aid of their glue stick . 


There was also one person standing, slightly stooped over a table or walking around quietly, our teacher Michelle Wipplinger. The Robins family had clearly not anticipated this kind of neighbourhood when they decided to set up shop just a few weeks earlier. It was distressing for them and for at least some of us glue stick and scissor wielding humans. Fortunately we did agree to take a morning break and an afternoon break outside the barn, allowing for a snack time for the youngsters and when we ate lunch it was under a beautiful big tree in the yard, far away. This way they could have almost complete privacy for about 20 minutes before we all or at least some of us rushed back to continue climbing our learning curve.
The babies survived and by the end of their five days they were big enough to sit and push and fight each other halfway out of the nest - the following week they were able to take their first flying lessons and then.... were off into the world, hunting, eating, singing, flying.
Around the barn and up along the studio and the house there were beautiful flowerbeds. And... flowerbeds can be awesomely busy places to behold too.

Th Bumblebees were especially industrious, humming and flitting all over. Makes me wonder how much nectar a flower at its peak can serve up in a day or a week, for the little busy bodies were numerous and as I said earlier, very industrious.

Then there were the ladies, the ladies who greeted us in the driveway in the morning and who loudly declared to the world that they had produced yet another natural wonder.
They were walking about freely, having a good leisurely life, nothing too strenuous, other than the daily wonder deposit.
I have a soft spot for hens, their way of doing life, their quirkiness, movements and ways to share and inform their friends and followers of what is going on in their little corner of the world.
A green bee, I have read elsewhere what kind of bee this is, but I have forgotten - one cannot retain everything I guess.

It was exciting to observe natures way of presenting us with complementary, primary and secondary colours - they are everywhere if one stops for a second or two to observe or investigate. Either 'action' will work depending on one's energy level at that moment in time.
Not only colours, but light and shadow, grey and black and white, neutrals - and creepy sensations.

This little guy really was very small, less than 5mm however, my micro button on the camera works wonderfully and so this gives me a change again, for a face to face on the screen and not in a real life eye to eye situation. Phew!

And last but not least this little ...... beetle, or fly or whatever it is, shining so beautifully red or orange amongst all the neutrals of the driveway.

It was irresistible I had to bend down and and push the trigger, well, the button - quickly before the little beauty scurried away on its own special and very private business.

And so all around us, everywhere I turned there were experiences setting off the new found knowledge from the lambing barn - whether it was about colour or neutrals, light or shadow, all of it came together so nicely.

 Making a person thankful once again for having had the opportunity to participate and experience this spot and point in time.

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