Wading in a pool of abstraction © Robert Sommers 2023

Thursday, August 13, 2020

Summer reset

Birds and a bunny - Gene Kloss (1903-1996) oil on board - Blue Heron Gallery
It is hot in Southern California, the thermometer is tiptoeing on either side of 100 degrees and the humidity is nearing 50% as I write this post. Hot and clammy. But not totally unbearable, in fact it has its own distinct charms.

I talked to my painter, art dealer friend Gordon for close to an hour when I got home, first sitting in my car and then sitting in a chair in my garden while I heard his wonderful stories.

I bought my first artwork from Gordon, then Rick Griffin's agent, forty five years ago. We have known each other for a very long time.

As we talked on the phone I watched bunnies and squirrels scamper around all over the palm and succulent garden, the nutmeg mannikins taking a dip in the bird bath, the male quail strutting around, all of the fauna at my place just operating at maximum overdrive. Fun to just sit and watch. The world may be embroiled in all sorts of plagues and politics, the critters don't pay it any mind at all.

Reminded me of this Gene Kloss painting, one that I own and which once hung in her kitchen.

Yesterday as I left for work I was startled by a young bobcat running out of my neighbor's field and across the street. A white bob on the tail, this cat was no bigger than a house cat and its coat was a beautiful deep orange red.

Wild cats in my area come in all colors, from buff and fawn to very dark, they are all different. I have never yet taken a picture of one, they happen so fast; you are lucky to see cougar or bobcat let alone grab a picture of them.

The latter feline is an incredible creature in its own right, I have watched one at night effortlessly jump a six foot fence from a crouched position and their hind quarters are very powerful indeed. I hope that I am lucky enough to get a decent puma or bobcat shot one day.

I called my neighbor on the other side to tell her about the sighting and she said that the bob kitten had been in her yard several times the last couple weeks. We both wonder where the mother is and if we are dealing with an orphan at this point?

Will have to keep an eye out for our own kitties in the yard if the bobcats are hanging around. Something strange was eating outside my  bedroom window the other night but I never went out to check what. Lots of screech owl action every night too.

Leslie just came home. Said she had a young rattlesnake in front of her on the way home. she snapped a shot. Less than two feet long but already five rattles.

It didn't coil but made a succession of backwards s's as it turned around and backed into the brush. Quite polite.

A neighbor told me they saw a black shouldered kite in the valley the other day, sorry, now known as  a white tailed kite. Haven't seen one here in a long time.

Enjoy your summer. We are living through a very powerful and strange time.

Got word that our old friend Jack Kopol died yesterday. Jack was a dear man, came to our wedding. Loved by all. Godspeed Jack.


Sharon said...

That is one beautiful rattlesnake. My job in my community is to safely remove any snakes that the homeowners don’t want in their yard. I’ve relocated many rattlesnakes but the one pictured is really a wonderful specimen.

Blue Heron said...

Leslie is very respectful to them, hates to see them killed. It was pretty, you are right.