Gary and I have been walking the Katy Trail. This is how Gary enjoys the beauties of nature:
wildflowers: "There must be a dead body buried there. That's what makes wildflowers bloom in a patch like that."
reeds by the river: "If an escaped convict chased us into the river we could use those reeds to breathe."
abandoned pair of shoes: "Look! severed feet."
We found a fishing knife. Murder weapon. There was a breeze in the outdoor latrine. Satan's cold breath was blowing into his rectum. Unlike me, Gary tends to the hyperbole. And he is not a nature lover.
That is why when we were driving back from our hike I steeled myself to see the freshly dead possum we had seen driving on the way to the trail. It was a big possum in the middle of Greens Bottom Road. At the time Gary had driven past and just said "Big possum. Must have just died," but now seeing it a second time he would have concocted a murder mystery around the possum, or had the possum die suddenly of SARS, or something. So I had to steel myself and gather up the breath for a patient sigh.
I had also been admiring a hawk making "lazy circles in the sky" like in the song from "Oklahoma." I see one of those hawks once a week on Greens Bottom Road. This hawk seemed to be floating down to the road.
"Look at that bird!" Gary said.
"Hawk." I patiently said.
"Its crazy! It's going to land in the road!"
"No it isn't," as it landed in the road right in front of us, on the dead possum.
Gary screamed, "It's a vulture!"
"No--" I began as the vulture's red vulture head popped up and glared at me with its psychic red eye for suggesting that it was not a proud vulture-like vulture.
My reaction to the beauty of the vulture is to scream and slap wildly at my husband's arm like I was in a 6th grade girl fight and say "BaaaAhhhhhhhh! BahhhAhhhhh!"
The vulture looked at us with the hatred only an insulted vulture can assume and swooped off.
Of course, we drove to a safe spot, disembarked, and hightailed it back to the dead possum where there were now the classic three vultures making lazy circles in the sky.
Gary said, "Lie on the ground and look dead."
We waited, but we had angered the vultures (or perhaps buzzard hawks) and they would not land and peck out my eyes, much to Gary's disappointment.
I know I belong to the land, and the land I belong to is grand. Yippe-yi.