The scent of lilacs and the sight of thousands of buttercups sprinkled across a field are so deeply associated with childhood for me that I forget my grown-up self entirely when I encounter them. Toss in a lily pond teeming with plump pollywogs, and I'm a goner.
Wild turkeys, on the other hand, are something I never saw as a child. These days I see them quite often. I suppose this has something to do with how much of their habitat humans have stolen with our never-ending sprawl of Tim Horton's and Targets. Or maybe there are more of them now than there were 30 years ago. That's a lovely thought. Does anyone know if it's true?
I am lucky. I live in a port city that is small enough to feel neighborly, yet large enough to be cosmopolitan. And best of all, it is sprinkled within and around its borders by fields, ponds, rivers, and marshes. I've shown you Gilsland Farm before, and here it is again in these photos. The home of the Maine Audubon Society, this place is simply stunning. If you visit Portland and love bird watching or just taking walks in a peaceful place, you can drive or bike two miles north of the city center, and suddenly you are in the middle of fields bordering an estuary and home to loads of wildlife, from turkeys to hawks to bullfrogs to osprey. Oh, and don't forget the groundhogs!
In a few days I will have a treat to share when the hundreds and hundreds of peonies bloom at Gilsland. For what's a blog in late spring without photos of peonies, right? In the meantime, I want to thank everyone who wrote kind comments and emails in response to my last post. I was feeling more than a little shaky. You all are a boost to a girl's spirits. Thank you for your generosity and friendship . . . and welcome to new readers and followers.
Requisite springtime-blogging photos of peonies coming soon!