I live in a neighborhood that was built in the bend of a river; it backs up on all sides to woods and water. It also did not exist 13 years ago, which was the last time that one of nature’s stranger specimens made itself known here – the cicada. (We appear to be in the middle of Brood XIX, the Great Southern Brood, that breeds on a 13-year cycle.)
This afternoon my wife commented that she felt like we were in the middle of the Doctor Who episode “Planet of the Dead“; I think that anyone looking for a good sound effect for a low-budget SF or horror flick could just come stand in our front yard with a recorder for five minutes and have everything they could possibly want.
Also, an ice cream truck drove by earlier, and I would love to know who thought it was a good idea to have their truck play “La Cucuracha”…
My hometown of Knoxville, TN is in Brood X, the Great Eastern Brood,which is on a 17-year cycle. I was visiting my parents in 2004 and there were just millions of the things laying dead everywhere. It’s eerie, isn’t it?
It definitely has heightened my awareness of the nature around me, as well as both the fleeting nature of our lives and the endless endurance of life itself.
It also occurred to me this morning that when this brood hatches again, my daughter will be… 23. *That* is a sobering thought.
The world is a far stranger place than most people realize.
I’d totally be playing “La Cucuracha” too.
I’m completely amazed by life’s tenacity. Water bears (tardigrades) can endure the total vacuum and extreme cold of space (http://www.redorbit.com/news/space/2049542/tardigrades_return_to_space_aboard_shuttle_endeavour/index.html) in a dormant state, and some recently discovered bacteria are able to LIVE at a temperatures of up to 121 degrees CENTIGRADE (yes, ABOVE boiling!)
I haven’t seen many of the alien horde in town, but I’m sure I’ll see them while camping this weekend.
When we went down to Clarksville, TN last weekend, I think their brood (whichever it is) was also out, because it was crazy loud.
I suppose you’ve heard about Columbia, Missouri’s solution for the plague: