Animal Signs, Gabriel’s 66th Birthday, and Wild Treasures

by Courtney on May 16, 2009

As I sit here on my porch writing this, I am observing a small lizard, about 6 inches long, catching flies. This lizard picks the same spot on a particular tree every time I see it. Every weekend for the last few I’ve seen it, just chilling on the same place on the trunk that it likes to go back to.

Speaking of animal signs, last weekend a friend and I had a profound experience. We were sitting on this porch having a rather deep conversation about our lives, and a hummingbird descended right in front of us and hovered for quite while. We sat in awe (hummingbirds are rather rare here and we believe that animals often have messages for us – is anyone an ‘Animal Speak’ expert?) and then it hovered away. Within about 30 seconds, a huge snake, the biggest I’ve ever seen here (not a rattlesnake, but perhaps about 4 feet long and thick), slithered up onto the porch near us and then back into the grass. Shortly thereafter, my lizard friend hopped to its place on the Tree and hung with us for a while. Anyone know what hummingbird + snake + lizard, all within a few minutes, means?
As a service to celebrate Gabriel’s birthday (which was on Thursday, he turned 66), this morning our project coordinator organized a sunrise meditation, several hours of service in the garden, followed by brunch. They move brunch down to the garden once every year for Gabriel’s birthday, and it is so enjoyable.
Even the eating area of the Cafe is outside, surrounded by the beautiful views of this area, but there is still something different about actually eating one’s food in the very place much of it was grown. That connection to the Earth feels even more pronounced.
I go for walks almost daily here in Patagonia, and on my various routes this last week I have discovered mulberry trees, and many goji berry bushes. I knew about the mulberries last year and enjoyed a small handful fresh of the trees daily, but I was with the belief that goji berries grew elsewhere in Arizona, not at the elevation Patagonia is. I am excited to watch the gojis ripen and eventually eat them! I have yet to try a fresh goji berry…

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