Some of my wife's girlfriends were in town, visiting from Trinidad all week, and like most women, they did their fair amount of shopping. A couple of days ago I drove them around to here and there, including the local mall. For me personally, a visit to the mall is, for the most part a pretty boring, soul-sucking experience, as it can be for a lot of guys. The perfect remedy to this was a visit to a local pond where Kris spotted a beautiful great blue heron. We decided to visit the pond while we ate some fro-yo from a nearby business park. What was interesting was the pond was man-made and teeming with wildlife, from ducks, to geese, to turtles and of course the big heron. The icing on the cake however was the two very blue juvenile herons flying around, zipping back and forth above the pond and through an artificial water-spout, like two little fighter jets. We all got our Steve Irwin on, trying to get good shots of the large, elusive bird, and after the I-phone cameras weren't cutting it anymore, I ran back to the car to get Kris' friend's little camera, which had a much better zoom and resolution.
I've taken a keen interest in the blue heron lately and find I've been seeing it more and more often, in many cases it flying slowly, directly above me, whether I'm walking or driving. Recently one flew right over me and made the loudest noise from its mouth, sounding just as prehistoric as it looked, with its six-foot wide wingspan. Kris always says half-jokingly that the blue heron is my spirit, or power animal, a concept or belief with origins in ancient shamanism. One very interesting blog post I discovered from some time ago discusses the blue heron as spirit animal, who shares a great deal of my own personal characteristics, for better or worse. While the blue heron can be seen as a graceful, peaceful bird, it can also be a relentless hunter, spearing and killing young ducklings, rodents, fish and other small animals - pretty much anything that can fit into its mouth and down its throat, though some have been known to have gotten carried away and chocked to death on prey too large to swallow. That's the way of the natural world though, and the heron has no supermarket to shop from, and like all wild animals, must find a way to survive. I look forward to returning to this place with a good camera and getting some better shots soon, hopefully.