Coastal Prairie

Coastal Deer
This morning,  we hiked the Coastal Prairie. I was hoping to see a coyote like the wild intense one we saw last time we were here. I remember him so vividly crossing our walking path 20 feet away,  stopping and turning to face us. Pausing for a few slow moments, then disappearing into the brush.

We didn't see a coyote today.

I wasn't disappointed.

We watched a white tailed kite, frost white as snow with large yellow claws perch on a tree next to a pair of ravens, a northern harrier hunted close to the ground, the wheat colored prairie hiding prey beneath her, in the distance deep blue waves crested and fell against sandy beaches forming coves and glaciers of rock.

We followed the trail watching a kingfisher glide over landing on a cypress like tree by a small pond. Bristle like feathers spiking from his narrow head as he looked out from above at the ripples of water below.

Two does watched us from a distance, their fawn colored ears twitching, reading us, determining we were safe enough to walk by, they followed their well worn trail to the cliff hanging above the beach.

We breathed the sea air, looked through our binoculars,  consulted our field guides and compared mental notes, trying to identify the dozens of Raptors and prairie birds filling the sky.

Hungry, we stopped at one of our favorite roadside diners,  leaving seconds later after hearing one of the cooks raspy cough. I was jolted from my escape into nature, reminded of the virus hanging in the air.

I promised myself not to watch or read the news. I promised my partner to forget about the doom and gloom,  to allow the peace to settle in for just awhile.

An alert from the closest city came through my cell, impulsively I read the news of more cases of confirmed virus infections and shutdowns.

The deer,  the raptors, the blue waves,  and the coyote hidden in the prairie grasses waited for my return.

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