Butterflies and Fly Puke

A yellow monarch dances under the willow trees skinny swaying arms. There is a light breeze and I see a fish jump in the calm lake, almost as if it is a rock skipping in the water. It is Monday; all the other campers are gone, except for a few empty RV’s next to us and one other family further up the road. I sit in my green lawn chair, drinking my Mt. Chill (don’t you just love the names of generic pop?), and take deep cleansing breaths of nature. I’m really glad the wind is blowing the other direction; otherwise you smell the port-a-potties that are three cabins down. They have their advantages and disadvantages of being so close.

A cardinal, bright as an apple with a shiny beak, lands under the tree less than 3 feet away from me. I sit still and watch him hop on his strong bird legs. He cocks his head looking at me, as if he is asking me where everyone went. He jumps higher on the tent pole like an acrobat, scaling the side of the tent sideways. Man, I wish I had my camera. Then I remind myself just to enjoy the moment. I take a picture in my head.

It is almost perfect; the scenery, the weather, the quiet peacefulness. Then a fly buzzes my ear. I can count at least 20 of them on the porch rail, and that is only the ones standing still for a brief second to include them in the head count. I once heard that a fly pukes every time it lands. I imagine all the fly puke everywhere. If this is true, then our entire cabin and everything around it is saturated in fly puke. Oh nature, how I love you.

I am only a part-time nature lover. I can take it in short bursts.

Where do the flies go at night? Where are the mosquitoes during the day? And why do they feed on us? I have decided this is nature’s irony.

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