Sunday, February 24, 2019

Two Hikes in November 2018

The first hike is with an Olympus OMD-EM1 camera and 12-40mm Pro lens.  We first encountered a fellow that had a couple of Carolina dogs.  He tends to hang around rather than hike; so I waved and we kept moving. 

We next encountered what I believe to be a Great Egret.  Males build nests and then wait to attract females, and I wonder if that was happening here.  Perhaps a female is already in the tumbleweeds.  Ben gives the male a hard look, and the male stretches out his neck, perhaps in the belief that he looks fearsome while doing so.  Maybe he did to Ben who readily followed me when I told he we were going the other way.

I used the Olympus EM1 camera again, but this time used a Panasonic Lumix 12-60mm lens.

I intended to go directly to the levee and bypass the Squatter encampments, but Ben had other ideas.  So I turned back to catch up with him and thus encountered a Squatter who is a major procrastinator.  He has been working on an encampment at the juncture shown for well over a year.  He wanted to talk and asked me if I knew the name of the bird that was endangered.  He thought I came down to the river to take photos of birds.  He said someone had told him that.  He thought I was affiliated with the biologist who did come down to check on this bird.  She told me the name of the species at the time, but I didn’t remember it. 

We did make it up to the levee.  The plants being grown at the nursery-supply facility have some interesting colors.  I wonder if they would look this good if we were experiencing a normal rain-season.

Next we encountered some workers grading a couple of areas designed to collect and store rain-water.  Good-luck with that.   

Next I encountered a black crow on the branch of a burned-black tree and took some photos and feeling guilty as I did, because I told the procrastinating Squatter that I didn’t come down here to take photos of birds.  But I rationalized what I was doing by having assumed that he was assuming that bird-photography was my primary mission at the river; which it isn’t.  

Next, a rabbit ran past us and Ben gave chase.  Eventually Jessica followed.  I don’t think Duffy saw the rabbit so he stayed with me.   And it goes without saying that the rabbit was in no danger. 

Lastly, we encountered a couple of fellows coming out of the brush on their way up to their car parked on Soboba Road.  Some people have theorized that drug dealers provide drugs to the Squatters.  I tend to think that isn’t happening, but these two guys could pass for drug-dealers if someone was inclined to think in those terms.   The one in the green shirt was impressed with Ben and asked if he was a Rhodesian Ridgeback.  Ben was extremely attracted to this guy who eventually felt he had to discourage Ben and tell him to go back to me.  Just because he liked Ben wouldn’t necessarily mean he wasn’t a drug dealer, but look at the other guy who has a name-tag around his neck.  Are Squatters entitled to medical aid?  If so, perhaps these guys were “carers” providing aid or medicine of some sort to some of the Squatters. – just an alternate theory. ;-)

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