- finally identified a female rose-breasted grosbeak;
- encountered the biggest spider I've ever seen outside a zoo (and didn't stomp on it!);
- watched foxes cavorting on a cliffside while the neighbor's bossy basset hound lumbered past obliviously at the top of the hill; and
- discovered mud-loving butterflies.
I grabbed the camera and walked quietly closer and closer until I was nearly upon them, but then Hopeful came bursting through the underbrush and startled the butterflies into flight. Suddenly I found myself at the center of a swirl of yellow and black flashing and swirling in the evening sun, flying higher and farther until finally dispersing into the distance. No camera could capture the wonder of that moment.
Do me a favor, okay? Next time I act as if I'm stuck in the same old dull routine, give me a nudge and remind me of butterflies in the mud. I'm still not sure what I witnessed, but whatever it was, it was certainly surprising.