a million 85 degrees up here at the barn, bright sun, no breeze, just the fan shoving muggy air back and forth. The dogs have been crashed under the desk from the instant we arrived, pressed flat against the concrete. Even the hummingbirds seek relief, fly in from the feeder, hover here beside me, maybe thinking dim equals cool.
And then there's the coyote. It's a small one, kind of scraggly, a little snarly, quiet and quick. He glided by this morning and as I looked up and my brain clicked through Movement! Animal? Grey. Dog. Grey dog? No! Coyote! he was gone. Too fast for the camera and too fast, thank goodness, for Walt and Maisie to catch the scent.
It's a few hours later and he just came by again, and again all I can do was watch, afraid motion might spook him, wanting more to witness than to capture. He has a snaggle tooth. His feet are small and neat. His fur does that coyote thing, stands up thick, ripples as he walks.
I think he's here for water, for Maisie's bowl and Walt's pool, both filled fresh each day then left alone all night, an urban splurge here in these dry, dry hills.