Ramble with Storm: Backroads, coyotes & Blue Highways

SHARE Ramble with Storm: Backroads, coyotes & Blue Highways

Mulling things on my morning ramble

with Storm, the family’s mixed Lab.

The coyote loped across the river road, just behind a farmer on a tractor heading back to the shed, last night.

Coming home from my daughter’s soccer practice, I have the option of going the most direct route through a series of towns or taking the slightly longer route through the country. I usually take the longer one.

The coyote, seen for an instant and that close, looked like the size of a German Shepherd. I can understand why big coyotes are mistaken for wolves in passing sightings. Of course, there is also the possibility in 21st Century Illinois that it is a wolf.

Sights like that are why I take the backroads. It’s something my dad has done since my earliest years. Part of it is just a function of his being a truck driver in his younger years. Part of it is just a way to economically fulfill the wanderlust of a man who never had enough money to truly wander.

My love of the backroads was cemented by my reading.

Faithful readers know one of my favorite books is William Least Heat Moon’s classic travel (philosophy?) book, Blue Highways: A Journey into America.

That is the bible for wandering America.

It was quite the night. At least three deer barreled across one just picked cornfield. Another deer startled my daughter and me.

It was down in a ditch, apparently ready to walk through the pipe under the road. We first saw the eyes right at road level and realized it was a doe.

Maybe the full moon has something to do with it.

Because it was a much better morning for wildlife this morning.

The meathead and I spooked three squirrels before we were even a block from the house.

Many migrating birds were scattered through town and along the edges of the town pond. I am not good enough with birds to ID them.

Once again a blue jay squawked by the north old clay pit and seconds later a belted kingfisher flew out with much loud squawking of another sort.

Again cool enough that wisps of fog lifted off the town pond. Colors are changing more every day, now more richer oranges are popping.

Just before we reached the house, another squirrel sprinted up a tree. From the safety of the remaining leaves, it chattered a sharp opinion.

Not sure if it meant anything or made any sense.

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