Back to the Ponds

Some delightful things occupy the days now that water fills the vernal ponds once again. I visit two: the secret vernal pond near my house, and one farther away named “Ten Acre Pond” that my friend shows me. The salamander and frog eggs rest in big jelly-like clusters all over the pond. Soon, thousands of eggs will cover the pond. Yesterday, I saw the fairy shrimp and red-spotted salamander, but it’s still too cold for frogs and turtles.

At the Ten Acre Pond, my friend (a birder and expert in most things), hands me binoculars so I can see all the ducks, a swan, and anything else she points out. I’m learning my bird sounds and descriptions so I can go birding with my friends. I’m most excited for our upcoming dawn or dusk walks to look for owls. I’ve had to go owling several times now to bring legitimacy to the sentences I’m writing in the next novel. I wanted to actually feel what my characters feel, smell what they smell, and hear what they hear in the Pennsylvania woods.

Here, we love the forest. We love the spring ponds, all the birds, and the promise of owls.

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