April Showers

The roam on Saturday drew a nice crowd of regulars and occasionals. The weather could not have been finer; warm and with not so much wind. It was mostly too late to see the magnolias in the Botanical Garden – which had been my initial intention, scuppered by too many rainy weekends – but the rhododendrons were coming into their own, and the various blossom trees there, and throughout the parts of the park we visited, were doing splendidly. There was also much bird life to enjoy – red-tails circling and mewing, and occasionally putting up with crows trying to unsettle them. In a couple of trees on the lake, we could see nesting herons, which had been pointed out to me when I had been there a couple of weeks ago. It was hard to make out exactly what was going on, but there were a few heads and wings for sure. It reminded me that it was time for one of my favourite occasional summer pastimes, tuning in to the osprey cam in Scotland (indeed, three eggs are already laid!) I enjoy not just the close-up of the birds’ life in the nest, but the soundtrack of all the different birds around the loch, from geese to little songbirds, all familiar from my childhood.

There was a front of rain forecast for Monday; as with other times this winter, as we got closer to it, its arrival was put back a few hours, so I decided it was worth the risk to sit outside. With Zachary at Tassajara for a couple of weeks going through his dharma transmission, I have been borrowing a trailer from the bicycle coalition and taking the cushions and goza mats down with me, which is fun if a little laborious.

In the end, even though it clouded over as we sat, and got a little cooler, the rain did hold off until later in the afternoon, and I was glad we had been able to be outside. There were birds there too – hummingbirds and parrots, seagulls and pigeons of course, and also cormorants skimming over the water in a line. Some familiar dogs were frolicking in the grass as well, and we were photographed several times by passing tourists, which I suppose is an occupational hazard when you are not sitting in a zendo.

Apparently that is the last of the foreseeable rain, which at least bodes well for the Zen-a-thon ride to Green Gulch this Saturday. I am glad to be helping out with it, even if I don’t feel as fit as I would like for getting over the hill on my fixed gear.

IMG_0402.jpgBlossoms in Golden Gate Park a couple of weeks ago.

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