...And the sky opened up and the rain fell in torrents in the form of a huge thunderstorm. The water of the storm washed away everything from the surrounding land. As the rain began to cease, small creatures began to come back out from their hiding places, but there was no sign of Ratty's geese on the water or on the land. Ratty looked to the sky and promised to be good again, but the geese never came.
After the huge thunderstorm I went back to the park where I had been teasing the geese. I didn't find the geese, but I found the results of the storm all around me. The sky was still dark with rain clouds, and day was turned into night inside the forest. There was a thick mist in the air that made it hard to breath, and my clothes became soaked just from walking around.
Everything in the forest was full of water from the storm. As I said, the air was a thick mist. Even though it was finished raining, there was water falling from the trees because the leaves were so heavy with the water that had been collected on them. Branches were even breaking under the weight of the water. Nothing was safe in the forest today.
If you're looking for animals, the time right after a storm has ended might be the best time to find them. There were huge flocks of birds inside the forest and at the edges. I tried to take pictures of them, but things were just so dark and steamy that they were already flying away by the time I would lift my camera.
The forest was also just full of black squirrels, but these creatures are the ghosts of the forest to begin with. It is very difficult to get a picture of one of these creatures out here in good clear weather, and in the dark it is next to impossible. The only reason I saw them was because there were so many running through the woods.
There is a sad thing that happened while I was out on the fishing platform, looking at the flooded lake. Behind me there was a commotion of something crashing through the trees. Then I heard an animal wailing. I really had no idea what it could be at first. Maybe either a squirrel or a bird calling.
When I finally walked back in that direction, and up the stairs of the platform, I heard it more clearly. From under the stairs, and out of reach, the wailing came again. I began to understand what had happened. The crashing sound must have been a poor squirrel that had fallen from high up in a tree. It had made its way under those stairs and was suffering. There was absolutely nothing I could do. I moved on to leave it in whatever peace it could have.
I moved quickly down to the dam to see what the storm had done at that end of the park. The whole area was flooded. The viewing platform back here was under water, and the dam was overflowing. The small peaceful creek at the outlet of the dam was now a raging river. The water was overtaking the land everywhere.
There were no geese on the lake, but there were ducks sitting on an old log. They probably rode out the storm right there. It was very difficult to see anything because of the steamy mist that had formed. My camera could see better than I could, but it was having trouble focusing on anything.
There were several of the bigger water birds out on the lake. I will show you more of them in the upcoming days. There was just so much to see that I have yet to sort it all out in my mind, and I'm still trying to get over the thought of the squirrel. I'm sure it feels much worse about it than I do. It's now hard to write anything at all when I think of that, so I'm going to stop right here.