“The fireflies o’er the meadow In pulses come and go.”

I am beginning to think I am an extra in the movie Groundhog Day. I wake up to the same weather every day: overcast, chilly and damp. The rain sneaks in, just spitting rain my mother would have called it.

The week ahead is a quiet one for me with nothing planned, an empty dance card. We have yet to have a movie night as the nights have been quite chilly, down to the low 60’s. I’m hoping as the days gets warmer toward the middle of the week the nights too will be warm.

Yesterday I spend over an hour scrubbing the chairs and the table on the deck. They had been scrubbed once already, but it doesn’t long for the caterpillars to leave their frass all over the deck wood and the furniture. What is frass you ask?  It is caterpillar poop. There’s a new word to add to your vocabulary. Think of ways you can pepper your conversation with the word frass.

When I was kid, we used to capture caterpillars so they could walk all over our fingers and go from one hand to another. We thought they were fun to watch. I flicked a caterpillar off my deck the other day. I’ve had to spray some plants which have holes from munching caterpillars. They are eating machines who eat and poop and eat and poop.

When I was young, I was far more fascinated by bugs and snakes than I was afraid. The grasshoppers were great to watch as they jumped in front of us while we walked through the field. They were brown and not very big. They also weren’t all that fast as we could catch them with our hands. We always let them go. It was the fun of the chase we loved.

We didn’t often see snakes but the ones we did see were garter snakes. We’d find them in flower beds. I loved the way they moved. We’d stand and watch. We had no need to catch them unless it was to scare someone afraid of snakes. We’d hold the snake and run after the ‘fraidy cats and tell them the snake was going to bite them. We knew it wouldn’t but they didn’t.

The other night I went outside for a bit. My yard was aglow with fireflies. They were blinking in and out of the trees and along the fence. I stayed and watched for the longest time. I didn’t want to go in and miss them. They have always seemed magical to me though I know the mechanics of the glow. Science has its place and so does magic!

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4 Comments on ““The fireflies o’er the meadow In pulses come and go.””

  1. Our weather changes by the minute and has soo for a few days and will continue for a while longer. It’s hard to figure out when the best time is for a walk with the dogs, one never knows when a heavy shower will hit 🙂 They have promised thunder for several days now but so far it has missed us.

    We have so many butterflies now that we’ll get lots of catepillars soon. I did see a few on the nettles byu way to few to do any use by eatig all their leafs so I’m hoping for plenty more to come. The farmers here are all organic farmers so we have more butterflies here than what is normal, a good thing since butterflies are getting rare all over the world.

    I wish we had glowworms here but even if we did I would most likely not see them since it still is very bright most hours of the day, I would have to stay up till around 2am to be able to see them 🙂

    Have a great day!


    • katry Says:

      The sun is out now. I repotted the plants the squirrels broke when they knocked them off the deck, and by the time I was finished I was sweating. Luckily I came inside where the house was cool.

      I see a lot of caterpillars on the deck. They are eating the leaves of some flowers in the front. I sprayed, but then they found another plant.

      My back yard is usually dark unless Gracie triggers her lights. They are off the deck and can be triggered when the dog goes by them in the yard.

  2. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    I’ve read that there is a heavy gypsy moth infestation going on all around me. The oaks here are still in good shape with very little chewing on them. I remember the really bad infestation in the early 80’s. Whenever I rode through the woods, I could hear the frass (great word) dropping on the leaves like light rain. I made sure to wear my helmet. I also remember the caterpillars climbing up the outside walls of the cement barn. The bottom 3 feet of the walls looked like it had been upholstered in fake fur. Gross.

    For awhile, there was a ribbon snake living under the front porch. I had to check every time I let the dogs out because they would have tried to get him. Not long ago, the ribbon snake shed its skin and left the cast off bit in its basking spot. I found it because Piki Dog was intensely interested in something in that spot. I haven’t seen the ribbon snake since. I suppose, now that it’s bigger, it has gone off in search of bigger food.

    There was a firefly show in my yard and back woods the other night as well. I stood in my driveway for a long time and just stared off into space watching the flickering lights of fireflies in the trees and bushes. Science is cool and magic is wonderful. One can appreciate both in the same moment.

    The day was much like yours. Dreary, damp and dark until about noon and then the sun made its move. It’s still mostly cloudy but the sun is there.

    Enjoy the day.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      It is unbelievable on my deck. It was cleaned on Thursday, and I won’t go out there to sit today. I don’t know when they’ll move along, but I hope it’s soon. Gross is the perfect word. I saw several grasshoppers inching their way across the deck.

      I can’t remember the last time I saw a snake. It seems there were so many around when I was young. Maybe it it too many houses and too many people.

      The backyard magic holds my attention eery time I go outside at night. My yard is still natural with high grass and lots of trees. I never saw a reason for a backyard lawn. I call it Gracie’s yard.

      There is sun, but it is still chilly.

      Have a great evening!

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