Reclaiming the patio

on the patio

And not a moment too soon


It's already mid-April and I had not yet fallen back into my normal routine of starting the morning out on the patio with my coffee and my laptop. The spring has just been too cold, too wet, too windy to even think about it most days.

But while I cowered indoors, certain denizens of the neighborhood had begun to venture more boldly and more frequently onto my turf. Yesterday, for example, a young rabbit spent most of the day hopping about the patio for no apparent reason. I mean, there are better places to forage for tasty morsels of food than a concrete slab! It was almost like the little bounder was trying to assert territorial rights.

I would show them who was the alpha-male around here! This morning I gathered up my laptop and my coffee and headed out. It was immediately obvious that I was reasserting my rights not a moment too soon. A cheeky little charcoal-gray bird — it resembled a nuthatch — landed on the table and then hopped right onto the keyboard, using it as a platform to make a rousing speech about something or other. Then it flapped its wings in my face and flew off to take up a position on the wall, where it kept a challenging eye on me for quite a while.

Update (19-Apr-05) Today the little rascal flew in the house when I carelessly left the screen door open.

Perched on the sill under the clerestory window

"Hiding" atop the DVD player

Of course he couldn't find his way back out again. There's a reason people use the expression "birdbrain"!

split rock cactus

The plants are also running rampant. The split-rock cactus shot up two buds from between its lobes. One of these blossomed for one day; the other is apparently still considering whether to follow suit or not.


Meanwhile, the thyme has grown all out of control and is in full bloom. It's really quite pretty, but it is attracting more bees than fit in my comfort zone.


Even young Joshua is thriving. His trunk is thickening to about an inch and a half in diameter, and he's nearly six inches tall.