Among the many regular wildlife visitors, none have challenged me more than the wild turkeys. I have spent several years trying to get near enough to take pictures and observe them more closely. There seems to have been a change in their group consensus as I now feel they are stalking me.
The change began when a group of up to fifteen of them sauntered through our yard almost weekly this summer. Occasionally, one would quietly sneak up behind me and scream. I’m sure I can subtract several years from my life as a result of the sheer terror instantly instilled by that noise in close proximity.
Last month, I was terrorized by a turkey in our walkout basement. There are windows on three sides of it, with the side windows sitting just above ground level putting anything outside at a higher altitude than someone standing inside the basement. As I closed the door to a cabinet where I store canned goods, there standing outside looming above me, less than three feet away was a turkey with his face almost against the window. It seemed clear I was the zoo exhibit and he was the spectator. It’s a good thing I no longer had glass jars in my hands because I’m sure they would have been dropped as the turkey shrieked and dashed away.
Last week, outside my kitchen window, I spotted a group of three male turkeys. You can tell the gobblers from the hens because the males have long stringy beards hanging down their chests and spurs extending off their skinny legs above the feet. They were pecking around the front yard long enough for me to take photos and even change lenses.
Not bothered by the light rain, the turkeys strutted back and forth putting on a great show. Like a wet dog, they each stopped to shake the water from their topcoats and proceeded about their business all freshly rumpled and fluffed. My family moaned when I jokingly posed the question: if a turkey distributes moisture over his entire body by himself, can we call him self-basting? Lol
On a final unrelated note, my summer pepper plants have declared themselves immortal. After the boomerang warm then cold then warm then cold temperatures triggered the demise and regeneration of all my pepper varieties more than once, I dug up and transplanted the biggest and most hearty into pots and placed them in our indoor sunroom. The shock of the relocating appeared to kill them permanently.
I procrastinated moving the dead pepper plants back outside as I became busy for several weeks with various tasks. Finally, I dragged the pots onto the back deck with the intention of hauling the large pots to the place I store dirt for indoor plants. The weather then warmed up for several days and I was diverted to other work again. When I finally made it back to the pepper plants, they had again done the impossible and sprouted fresh growth on all its limbs. Wow.
Relocated to an indoor sunny shelf between the basil and the lemon trees, I promised the green bell peppers and the jalapenos that would not give up on them again. It is not lost upon me that my homegrown produce has taught me yet another lesson in perseverance.