I've been working at my desk since about 8:30 a.m. Between today's stint and an even longer session Saturday, I'm glad to say everything got finished and fired off to the various editors. I also included a cheery missive outlining my plans—in lurid and succulent detail—for the 23-pound turkey now resting on the bottom shelf of my refrigerator come Thanksgiving. The idea was to have them drooling on their iPads and suffering from hunger pains as punishment for not giving me an earlier heads-up when they decided to shorten my deadlines. I covered side dishes as well as the main course. Plus desserts. Editors tend to live on junk food, are perpetually hungry, and drool like Rottweilers at the mere mention of anything edible.
During one of today's few breaks, Moon the dog and I stepped outside for perhaps five minutes. I made one photo…which was of the afternoon sun shining through clusters of box elder seeds in a bankside tree about fifty feet from the cottage.
Actually, what you're seeing is not the true seed but the paired samaras, or "keys," each a couple of inches long, with the half-inch seed located at the base where the samara connects to the raceme's stem. These little winged seed packages were spinning and flying every which way on today's gusty winds—planting themselves, no doubt, by the tens of thousands. Which still leaves hundreds of thousands of box elder keys for the squirrels to nibble.
You know, I'll bet several of those editors I emailed are about now to the point where they'd gladly munch box elder seeds. What a pity I couldn't email them a bag…