An unworthy Deacon, named for the brother of God: James, striving to "work out his salvation with fear and trembling" within the Tradition (paradosis) of the Eastern Orthodox Faith. It is a strange and marvelous journey, and I am accompanied by the fourfold fruit of my fecundity. My wife, the Matushka or Diaconissa Sophia, is my beloved partner in the pursuit of Theosis, and she ranks me in every way.
First fire of the year is presently burning in the wood stove this morning. Near freezing temperatures...in fact it may have gotten lower but I didn't look when I was awaken at 4am to the astonishingly loud sound of coyotes barking and howling - with Mina and Killick responding in kind. I listened out the window upstairs for a moment and hearing they were far too close, I opted to drag my butt downstairs and make sure they weren't working their way into the barn or coop. I honestly didn't think they were because I didn't think they would be making such a vocal racket in the process, but I'm not a wildlife biologist. For all I know they were calling for help with the digging process.
Ruger in tow, I started on the back porch. My first thought as I stepped outside: Brrrr! October, and it is about as cold as it gets around here! And then the coyote let loose. YIKES! This pup was really close! But he/she was not anywhere near our animals...rather it was singing from not more than 10-20yards (I'd guess later) northeast of us. But, I could also hear at least one other voice coming from the south on the other side of the house. Killick was going absolutely ballistic, so I made him go back inside and I went around front.
I stood on the front porch and could hear the other one yelping - but this one was MUCH closer. And then I could hear him rustling in the woods somewhere between our house and the neighbor's driveway. Wow...this fellow was so close his voice would have drowned out the neighbor's generator! I'll bet these guys can be heard for miles. The coyote's yippy howl is really haunting and that combined with the cold air and the bright stars - Orion was prominent in the upper southern sky and the hazy milky way cutting a seemingly endless swath through the darkness - made for a rather eerie and yet beautiful scene.
I waited until I could neither hear them anymore nor stand the cold. Feeling reasonably sure they had moved on (and not toward the barn or coop) I went back to bed. I have not counted the cats yet, but assume they were both inside. Goats and chickens are fine.
The fire burning has a nice ambiance to it for sure...but I really wasn't ready to let go of summer. Yes, fall and winter have their beauty to them - rain not being one of them.
And for those treated to the switched image...my apologies. I didn't mean to step on someone else's bandwidth (nor did I think my humble take would amount to much) but they "got me good" and I corrected the problem. Lesson learned.