Back in the game!

On Christmas Day I fell during a hike and it left me sore and unable to walk – let alone walk with my camera backpack – for some time. I’m happy that I’m now completely healed and again able to go on hikes with my camera. Fortunately this weekend the weather was perfect as well, so I was able to take some nice misty shots!

Happiness

According to a Buddhist saying, “The flowers in spring, the moon in the fall, a refreshing wind in summer, the snow in winter- what do I need more? Every hour is an hour of happiness for me.”

Being in nature and perceiving its beauty certainly gives me happiness!

Pearl-spotted owlet

Yesterday we found not one but two of these lovely little owls in Dinokeng Game Reserve near Pretoria, South Africa. They hunt during the day from a perch, like this dead tree. A very special thing is that they have eyes in the back of their head, or at least spots that look like eyes as well!

Faith in the water

“I see a stream with slow moving sections and patches of turbulence. I can sense it is drawn towards something bigger than itself – the lake sitting miles from its origin. I notice the water doesn’t question where it’s going – it just keeps moving.

“I look at the rocks under the strong current and observe that they are still and solid. They remain secure enough not to lose their grounded and nurturing attachment to the earth while being incessantly thrust upon. I suspect they trust in their purpose to slow down the speed of the water.

“Occasionally, I watch a leaf fall from its source. It lands in the stream and begins its way to the chaotic water. I ask myself if the leaf was clumsy and lost its true nature or if it was forced there by the winds because it was too stubborn to let go. No matter. It doesn’t fight the inevitable or swim like mad to return where it came from. The leaf surrenders to the short lived patterns of being spun around, dunked, and flipped over, knowing she will make her way to a new stretch of calm water.

“I take a deep breath by this stream and tell myself that it’s time for more faith when my waters are turbulent, for more trust, and a stronger sense that I am moving where I need to go – a place I can’t see yet, but know is there.”

– Carol Cooley

(Photo taken in Wilderness, South Africa)

Elephant herd

A herd of elephants is approaching a watering hole on an overcast day in Pilanesberg National Park. One is testing the air with her trunk, while others mill around, waiting for her approval to go to the water. An impressive sight!