Tuesday, March 10, 2009

3-7-09 The Steadfast Tin Frog

3-7-09 The Steadfast Tin Frog
Originally uploaded by Willie C
You started it, Gary!

My Flickr friend from down the faultline has expressed the idea that this could perhaps be the "the elusive Aztec frog, once believed to be extinct".

Is it possible that it was last seen at Aztec, New Mexico? Since my youth, I had been skeptical of things relative to Aztec. That's the site of the renowned Aztec ruins and the restored Great Kiva.

For fifty years or more, I thought of the restored great kiva as a hoax, much elaborated and enhanced to hype it up for the attraction of tourists.

I saw the restored kiva in November of 1995, and thought it was quite impressive, but I still thought that very much of it was most likely conjecture, and veneered with modern ideas and styling. It was not until December of 2005, when I returned to Frijoles Canyon after many years of absence, and later in September of 2006 when I visited Chaco Canyon, that it began to work its way into my stubborn brain that great kivas were a significant feature in the ancient cultures spurred by the phenomenon of Chaco Canyon. There was a fine example at Frijoles Canyon, which had been excavated since the last time I'd been there.

The Great Kiva was most certainly not a one-of-a-kind tourist attraction. There are countless great kivas in the southwest, and it takes only a little imagination to believe that the restoration at Aztec is no doubt historically accurate.

Am I talking here about ancient cultures or amphibians? I've lost track now.

Tonight, just as The Mentalist was getting under way on our TV I heard, through the front door, the trilling of the toads! They have come to join the living leopard frogs, which have been serenading me nightly for weeks.

Tonight I will hear their voices in concert close by, beneath the open windows of our upstairs bedroom. Perhaps the Aztec frog will be so emotionally moved as to join in their song. We shall see.

Then, a predicted cold front will bring rain and chilly weather, and my wife will surely nag me to close the windows.

I'll still hear the concert, but it won't be the same.

An epilogue on the morning after....March 11, 2009

The toads retired before I did last night. The singing stopped before 10 PM. Perhaps it was because of the impending change in the weather, perhaps it was simply that they were tired after their mass incursion from wherever they had been, and needed to rest. Whatever the reason, I did not get my bedtime serenade last night.

This morning, about 6:12 AM, I awoke to the sound of swiftly moving air, and raindrops. Being well aware that my wife would not savor the idea of rain on her freshly painted window sill, I got up and closed the windows. Tonight, I feel fairly certain that it will be cool enough that I will leave the windows closed tonight as well.

I'll still hear the toads, mingled with the voices of the leopard frogs, but it will be muted. The direct communication with nature will not be happening for a few days longer.

The friend from down the faultline is no longer down the faultline, He's out on the Chihuahuan desert taking photos and living his dream! Live it up, with your EyeOnTexas. I'll envy you always.


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