January 23rd, 2006

Jin Shei Cover from sgreer

going cuckoo!

I just looked out onto our deck and saw something remarkably like this:



It's hard to be certain, I saw it from the back and side, but it definitely had the barred breast and the beak looks right - do we have cuckoos out there in our woods?!?
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Jin Shei Cover from sgreer

"I had a farm in Africa..."

Unlike Isaac Dinesen/Karen BLixen, I didn't. Not quite. But I spent 20 years of my life there, and a part of me will never stop loving the place - its wildness, and its beauty, and the paradox of its unearthly and sometimes cynical antiquity interweaved with an utter childlike purity of spirit. The Africa of even my generation, never mind any that came after, is fast disappearing - the plains of the Serengeti are far from the glory they once were, the elephant herds are shrinking, the lions are becoming more and more interbred and are beginning to vanish, the endless herds of zebra and impala and wildebeest are no more - but somehow it all clings on, enough for pictures like these to be possible:

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1021&message=15034733
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1021&message=15042113
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1021&message=15082464

(they've been formatted to fit the forum, click on each image to reveal its full power)

You see, to most people these are dream. To me, they are memory.

Bless your dust, Africa. You are beautiful.