Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Following His Tracks

I do a lot of walking in this area (although certainly not a lot compared to Russell). Many times over the years, I've worked my way deep into some little-known canyon, seeking their hidden mysteries, and on my return found email from Russell describing his own trek into the same area just a day or two prior. On far more occasions, however, the same kind of email would appear, tipping me off to new places to explore.

I revisited such a place a couple months back, off the beaten track, no sign of other travelers having been here for a long time. Very likely the case, too, considering the heavy brush in the area was recently burned off by a fire.

At the hike's turn-around point I sat down to eat lunch, a rocky point with views deep into the NFNF canyon. And there, at this same point, was one of Russell's clipped trees, neatly cut off at waist level. I felt like I had just missed him on the trail.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

He saved flies and spiders too...

and there was never such a thing as a fly swatter in our home! We had independently developed the habit of simply catching the little critters and releasing them outdoors.

Once, we were gone for a few days, and when we returned, found that the cabin door, which didn't latch firmly, had opened in our absence, and a mouse had taken the opportunity to set up residence in the insulation lining of the oven. For three weeks we tried to catch that mouse but it would NOT be caught--a very feisty mouse. It was wreaking havoc with my sleep, running around, chewing things up, leaving turds everywhere... Russ finally did resort to the snap mouse trap.

Russ's reverence for all life forms, for all of nature, actually (living and not) was deeply rooted. Part of it was from his insatiable curiousity about it all. He was driven to learn EVERYTHING. And once he learned something, he wanted to share it with everyone.