This morning – once again – my newsfeed is all politics and pandemic and financial collapse. So, as a public service, I’m sharing these photographs from the past couple of days just to make you smile. You’re welcome.
I’m sure I have stacked the deck in our favor by consistently putting out all that yummy bird food, but it seems we have become increasingly popular with our feathered friends. It may well be that some of the new development has forced the birds into the more mature neighborhood landscaping of Tyler Run, but I’m going with the idea that they just like us.
Regardless, it didn’t take more than a few minutes to gather this new set of photographs. The birds are beautiful, they certainly make me smile, and they remind me that there is so much to enjoy and be thankful for, even when – especially when – the world is going just a little bit bonkers!
I even included an image of my nemesis, the squirrel. But I do have to admit, in the spirit of respecting all creation, he’s just a little bit cute.
Finally, the milder weather gave my dad the confidence to let me take him out for a short walk. The excursion was such a success we will try for a repeat performance today. The wind was blustery, and he said it reminded him of walking along the sea wall in Folkestone, the English coastal town where I grew up.
I know it’s not in the realm of possibility, but I would love to take him there once more to watch the waves crash into the pebbly shoreline, to drink deeply of the fresh, salty air, and to look across the English Channel to the thin line of cliffs signaling the beginnings of France, and the continent of Europe beyond.
But this world, which has become in many ways so small and accessible during my lifetime, ceases to be navigable at all when the top of your own driveway is out of reach.
So the parameters of our lives expand – across oceans and cultures and nations, and then they contract. When I am in my 90’s, I pray that my horizons are still wide open and the whole world within reach… because I strongly suspect our children won’t be living in the house next door.
In love and gratitude, always – DEREK
Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there’s always something new in the works.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.
Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men’s Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.