So today, in the interests of pursuing something in the whole cactus fairy notion, I went to the Desert Botanical Garden.
I wish to violate the dominant theme of LJness in general, and state categorically that I love my life. Even if I never make more than is required to keep body and soul together, even if I die in penniless obscurity, even if my muse is still poking at batik swatches and muttering in the far depths of my diseased brain a hundred years from now, the fact that I can go to botanical gardens with a camera and wander around taking photos of mutant cactus in hopes of inspiration striking, and then call it a work day–this makes me think that I did not do too badly with the life that got handed me. My job counselor back in high school would despair, but I imagine the life of a high-school job counselor is one of neverending despair, so I feel no guilt.
So the garden was cool. I knew, of course, on some level, that there was undoubtedly a good variety of cactus out there–there’s saguaro and barrel and prickly pear and those homicidal cholla things, and if I really dredged my memory, I could probably remember the organ pipe and octillo, but my paltry memories of cactusdom fell terribly short of the reality. Cactus are pure insanity. I will post photos later. There were these warped monsterous cacti, and gnarled totempole cacti, and something called wortleberry cacti and one that I’ve completely forgotten but which started with a “w” and looked like some kind of succulent green vision of hell. There were also succulents, come to that. They were succulenty. And I stalked and photographed a preening cactus wren, but since I was taking photos of plants, which generally hold still and let you get pretty close before they break and run, I didn’t have the telephoto on, so I probably just have a vague, distant, wren-shaped blur.
Also I saw these things called “verdin.” They’re birds. They are actually smaller than hummingbirds, and quite adorable. Plus the usual line-up of curved-beak thrashers and Inca doves, and western whiptailed lizards, which I am growing terribly fond of. They’re so cute! And you can watch their tiny little minds work–gotta run gotta run gotta stop gotta scratch uh oh big tall thing gotta run away gotta run did it spot me its got a whirclickthing its pointing at me gotta run run run gotta freeze look a bush gotta hide… Love ’em.
And now, to look at photos…
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