Be Curious, Expect Miracles

That was some guidance I got a few days ago.  So, when the heavy equipment started rumbling around across the road very early yesterday, I tried to think about that instead of the fact that it was so. darned. noisy. out here in the purported middle of nowhere at the crack of day.  We made our coffee and got breakfast ready, and as we were getting ready to have some, an astonishing thing happened.

The Partner was looking out the front door, down the driveway.  Suddenly there was  a large, resplendent peacock walking purposefully toward our yurt.  A peacock.  Not at all what you expect to see here, it was like an apparition, a visit from a deity.  He walked  gracefully all the way up the driveway, strolled around the perimeter, and walked straight up to our front door.  It was as though he specifically  came up to introduce himself.  Quickly looking up what peacocks eat, we put grapes and sunflower seeds out, he ate, then proceeded to find a sequence of comfortable resting spots in the shade, and under the yurt, for the remainder of the day.  I called the across the road a piece neighbor- they know everybody around here so I figured they’d know if this astonishing being was local or not.  At first our neighbor sounded a little hesitant when I asked him if he knew anybody around here who had peacocks.  It turned out it was “their” peacock, in the sense that they had once had LOTS of peacocks and this guy was the last one.  “He’s a free range peacock- goes where he wants.  Wait’ll he shits on your car,”  he cackled.  “Hang in there!”

Relieved that we’d found out where Mr. Handsome actually lived (and he responded to that name, as if to say, YOU KNOW IT, BABY!), we told him his human said he could stay as long as he wanted.  He took walks with the Partner, the two of them looking at features of interest along the way.  When the three of us took a walk, he insisted on bringing up the rear, protecting us.  When I lagged, he’d stop, fluff his wings in a shoulder shrugging motion as if to say- do this right!  We deflected him from eating all our vegetable seedlings- apparently he likes the hot stuff as our habanero plants were devoured.  He drank water from a saucer, and hunted for bugs and seeds.  The lizards, which peacocks eat, all laid low.  As the day progressed, getting warmer and warmer, Mr. Handsome sat down next to each one of us in turn, not a foot away from our feet, and took naps, nestling his long neck down further and further into his chest and closing his eyes.  At the end of the day, after several leg and wing stretches and miscellaneous preening, he stood up and unfurled his tail for us.   We were open mouthed and speechless.

This creature is one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever, ever seen.  The color!  That long neck that looked blue, then purple, then tipped with a flame of turquoise and teal.  The stomach that looked black but was brushed with irridescent green and gold and purple.  The wings, patterned similarly to turkeys who are relatives, looked brown and white in a rippling pattern.  In the light the brown showed itself to be irridescent purple and deep green.  Mr. Handsome’s eyes were beautiful: deep brown, clear and intelligent.  He had white feathers on the tops of his legs that matched the skin further down flawlessly.  Large, take no nonsense feet and spurs ended the long legs.   He was huge, too.  The wings were powerful, and he could jump up about four feet with no apparent effort.  We saw this a few times as he, variously, hopped fences, got atop the yurt and the storage shed.

Being around Mr. Handsome was an interesting feeling state, too.  Sitting with him, one felt calm and balance.  A deep awareness and intelligence- different from ours but something that could be connected to-  welled up out of him, and it was as if he was saying, look here- everything will be fine.  Don’t worry so much.  Look at all of THIS.  A lot bigger than you are, isn’t it?  Don’t worry!  We spent the entire day with him, in the end.  It just wasn’t possible to stray from his presence, for some reason, to-do lists or not.  There was joy, real joy, in it all.  We shooed him out of the garden one last time- and he minded us- when we went in, finally, after 7 p.m.  We didn’t see him this morning, although we heard him calling.

We did run in to him today, however.  Our power went off, and I went next door to see if it was everywhere or just another special day in the yurt. Which, of course, it was.   It turned out that one of our landlady’s  dogs, who was tied to a tree next to the electric box and wires, had gotten her leash tangled in the one wire that carried electricity to us, thus shorting out the whole shebang.  Before we found that out, however, I had gone up on the front porch to see if their electricity was working or not (it was, which lead to the Dog vs. Wire Disaster Discovery), and was calmly greeted by Mr. Handsome himself.  He was standing on a table, surrounded by miscellaneous odds and ends of china, watching our landlady train one of her horses.  He was looking out over the trees and grassy slopes, watching the horses, following it all with his thoughtful eyes, gently lifting his magnificent, many-eyed, tail up and down, looking like a piece of heaven that had come to earth.

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