14 July 2008

A squirrel for all seasons

This photograph of a beautiful hand-crafted weathervane comes my way courtesy of a fellow blogger, Hugh Hubble, across the Pond. He photographed this stately metal fellow atop a country building and it led us both to believe that perhaps it was designed by a farrier, or some other old-world type artisan, a person gifted at what seems a dying art in modern times.
This functional creature inspires me as being truly a Squirrel for All Seasons. Perched higher on his equally beautiful rooftop than any of his flesh-and-fur colleagues might ever be in their respective trees, the squirrel gracefully surveys not just the landscape but the weather prospects ahead. In this respect, he "out-roosters" the rooster who is most typically seen in this position. (Ah, could "Weathervane Sentinel" possibly be the next career post to be outsourced, in this modern economy, to wild rodents? Probably not. The crowing bird still does the lion's share of the work, if you'll pardon the intermingling of metaphors.)

It's not so odd really, when you think about it. We watch squirrels moult in spring and wonder if the weather will turn warmer a bit earlier. We watch them cache their nuts in late summer into autumn and speculate if the winter will be without mercy. We squirrel-watchers observe them nest-building, migrating, mating and conducting all other manner of daily business. And from this, we conclude what our own lives will be like.

Perhaps in that respect every squirrel - whether on our rooftops or merely in our treetops - is, in its own way, a weathervane for us, helping us to chart the course of our own days and seasons.


Poetikat said...

Sometimes, in the evening, if the light is just right, I can look out my bathroom window and see almost the exact scene on our neighbours roof (minus the arrows).
They can't do that on ours though - it's a steel roof and not at all friendly to little squirrel feet.

Like your new "Headline Animator"!

Shall we be hearing the sounds of squawking squirrels in the near future?


Poetikat said...

This is the problem with a) my mid-life memory and b) the "show original post" feature. Not being able to see the picture while typing the comment, I strangely had a different image in my mind - with arrows. When I went back to the original post, NO arrows!

Oh well.


squirrelmama said...

Kat, you never know when you shall hear the happy sound of squirrels on this blog. I just have to convince them NOT to chomp the microphone!