I present to you installment #7 from my blog thread describing what to call groups of animals … See how many you can guess. Answers listed at the bottom of the page. (I’m especially proud of No. 5 on this week’s list!)
Their knot knotted in the mud.
He heard the murmuration’s murmurs.
Unblinking, the stare stared back.
The dole didn’t look doleful.
The earth’s earth was in the earth. ***
Stuffy noses don’t suit a sute.
Knot of toads 
Murmuration of starlings
Stare of owls 
Dole of turtles 
Earth of foxes; place the vixen (female fox) searches out to raise her kits; ground she finds the earth in. ***3 uses of the word!
I’m a girl who moved to the damp Pacific NW from upstate NY, where it can snow in April. When Uwe and I first fell in love, it was springtime in Europe. Flowers bloomed everywhere, the sun shone, we sat at outdoor tables in cafés holding hands… Mid-April and I’m in a t-shirt drinking wine at lunch with my sweetie ? Now this is the life!
I didn’t know it at the time, but I was falling in love with a way of life, too.
It’s twenty-five years later and I’m still here. I remain in love with the way of life. But we joke that if the weather had been different I might not have been so quick to agree to stay. Some years it snows here in April, too. On April 18 & 19, it came down hard and then melted.
Possible snow showers are in this week’s forecast.
But two weeks ago we were in Paris and the temperature hit 22° C (71° F). Everywhere the trees and flower beds were in bloom, and yes, we sat at outdoor cafés…
We made a day trip to Amiens’ magnificent cathedral, the largest Gothic cathedral in France. I was excited to discover that Amiens contains one of the few labyrinths still in existence. 
While I wait for the weather to decide if it really is springtime, I’m enoying the photos from the City of Lights.
Paris remains the most satisfying of cities.
It doesn’t matter if I’m in Paris for the art, the food, the shops, or the French way of life. Paris appeals to allof my senses. Whenever I’m there I fall right back in love with being alive. J’aime la vie!
Yet another addition to my blog thread describing what to call groups of animals! … See how many you can guess. Answers listed at the bottom of the page.
A rookery will hardly rook you.
The cast cast out sand.
The quivering quiver swayed and waited….
Culture doesn’t care about culture.
This lounge member lunged!
The swarm swarmed my sandwich and I couldn’t eat it.
Rookery of gooney birds 
Cast of crabs
Quiver of cobras
Culture of bacteria
Lounge of lizards 
Swarm of flies 
NOTES:  Ah, the gooney bird… now better known as the albatross. This magnificent bird’s wingspan can reach 11 feet! Status: 19 species of albatross are threatened with extinction. Environmental Watch  This particular lizard is a waran. It was bigger than me!  Nothing compares to the Hell that is a swarm of flies in Australia’s Outback. Nothing. Go to my earlier posts Warning: Waran!! and The Outback for more on my encounters with these critters.
I’m on hiatus at the moment from leading a writers’ group. I once compared the job to herding cats and the group loved the description. It became one of my official titles: Jadi Campbell, Herder of Cats.
Try to herd cats sometime; it simply can’t be done. Close your eyes for a minute and imagine a basket in the middle of a long room. The basket opens up and out pop fifteen cats of all ages and breeds. Can you picture them? Long hair, short hair, Manx, kittens, tomcats, calico, tiger striped, Egyptian, Persian, running, sitting abruptly to wash a paw, tumbling, chasing one another, purring, wandering away in all directions. Now, keeping your eyes closed, try to get those cats to all head in the same direction – the one that YOU want them to go in.
You will open your eyes and comprehend it is impossible to get a single cat to do what you want them to, much less a clowder of them.  Not only that: you start sneezing, because you’ve discovered you’re allergic.
 Yet another word to describe a group of cats is a pounce of pussies. Even better is the definition for a group of feral felines: A destruction of wild cats. More definitions to follow!
…Here’s the next installment from my blog thread describing what to call groups of animals! … See how many you can guess. Answers listed at the bottom of the page.
Grain needs a grist!
The sound of the sounder almost gave her a heart attack.
The flock flocked on his poor kids.
Wow, the muster mustered such gaudy colors.
When my bike ran over the bike, I knew I was in big trouble.
The drove drove towards us in the dirt road.
Grist of bees 
Sounder of wild boar
Flock of lice
Muster of peacocks
Bike of hornets
Drove of horses
NOTES:  Status: Endangered “….[P]ollinators are under threat around the world…about 40 percent of invertebrate pollinator species (such as bees and butterflies) are facing extinction.” This could have major implications for world food supply, because “about 75 percent of the world’s food crops … depend at least partly on pollination.” NPR Report
I’m a little slow sometimes. I recently realized that my new-and-improved wordpress website jadicampbell.com had a birthday in January and is now a year old. (Yes, I’m aware it’s already March!) So, what did I do with a year of blogging?
Last summer I lost my mother-in-law, an old friend, and my dad Bobbo, all within a shocking three-month period. Those were by far the hardest posts to write. But I discovered something: the most personal blog essays are the ones my readers (i.e., all of you) respond to most.
What you can look forward to in the Year of the Rooster: a huge blog thread for my father Bobbo that I’m calling The Animal Kingdom. Occasional notes about my volunteer work with refugees. Lots more quirky posts about places Uwe and I visit. And on-going musings about life, the Universe and everything in-between as I deepen the process of saying goodbye to those who have left.
May you find something here that makes you laugh, creates a spark of connection, and moves you enough so that you reenter your own life with a sense of touching upon mine. That would make the new year of blogging – and all the years to come – worthwhile. As Mae West says, “Come on up, I’ll tell your fortune.”