Here is our pond this week:
Each week we visit the pond there are almost imperceptible alterations to the atmosphere. This week, however, there really was a noticeable change. Things were calm, as they have been for a few weeks. The difference this week was that there was an air of slight desolation. The water level had gone down significantly over the past few weeks, revealing rubbish and a shore line which really is not as attractive as when the pond is full of water. This is a photo from last week showing it’s ugliness:
The mallards, of which there were many, look dejected and dull. The males and females cannot be told apart, the males having lost their mating coats. Here they are over the spring:
The lone Canada goose seemed lost without it’s partner, paddling around with no mate to honk at:
The only differences we could see was that the neck seemed to be much longer on our singleton and it looked a little scrawny. Who knows? It may well be a stray. I hope it is. Our resident Geese pair have been part of our pond for many years, it would be sad if one had died.
The heron flew off just as we arrived. In fact the bird flying in the picture at the top of the post is the heron. It circled overhead a few times, squawking loudly, it’s sound lonely, before it flew off (the children remarked we had never heard his noise before).
All the reeds, lilies, pond irises and grasses, which just a few short weeks ago had been blooming and at their best, were now down-trodden by nature, trampled and dying out:
There was a haunting aura surrounding the pond and we were pulled towards it, all of us, not wanting to leave.
This was one of our most favourite pond visits. The children had decided to go wading again, just like last week. This week they had long sticks to test the depths of the water all around and they did indeed traverse around the perimeter of the pond. This time though they were in the water!
This was ponding at it’s best.
Even when it started to pour with rain, the children begged to be allowed to stay, to sit and observe the pond in silence. Taking up their chosen position they settled down to contemplate the natural world before them, each touched by the experience:
The pond this week was not at its best, and yet we were all moved by our time there. Somehow it mirrored real life. The ups and the downs; the beautiful and the unsightly; the promise of new things to come, in contrast to the emptiness which often follows. Life and death; light and dark…it’s all there to see down at the pond.
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