All the Shades of Brown

A close-up of the face and shoulder of a male American bison, showing the many shades of brown in his fur, taken near Mormon Row in Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming in September 2011

As I sat beside the road, playing around with close-ups of the mothers and their young, the old bulls eventually ambled into view. These would be my favorite shots from this trip in the fall of 2011, what I love most about this one is that even though I often think of them as being one shade of brown, I am reminded, bison contain multitudes. As was often the case in Wyoming, many of my favorite encounters would be on the trails but many of my favorite pictures would be near the road. I hope you had a good life, not-so-little one.

Mostly Boo, A Little Ellie

Our black-and-white cat Boo rests on the tile floor next to a yoga mat in August 2018

From last summer, Boo relaxing on the tile floor next to a clump of Ellie’s fur. About once a week you could have assembled another dog out of the fur she shed, especially when a new coat was coming in. Her coat was so soft, people at the dog park always remarked on it when they petted her, which was often as she loved meeting people. I have to admit my estimation of strangers dropped a bit if they didn’t at least give her a pat on the head. Her estimation of them dropped a lot if she sniffed their pockets for treats and found them wanting. When she was younger she’d first sniff them surreptitiously from behind but in her senior years she stopped putting on airs and got straight down to business.

The Last Snow

A close-up of the snow beginning to melt on the fur of our dog Ellie, taken in February 2018

We got a few inches of snow in Portland on Tuesday, but with Ellie’s recent injury or illness she didn’t want to go for a long walk in it so I was surprised when she flopped down in the backyard and rolled around in the snow. I’m glad she got to enjoy it a little bit as I suspect this snow will be her last, not because she is in any imminent danger but because I have to choose now between two job offers, one in California and one in Arizona, and neither place gets snow unless you drive a ways to the mountains to look for it.


A close-up view of our cat Sam's fur where he got shaved for an ultrasound

Sam visited the specialist on Monday and got his belly shaved for an ultrasound, which thankfully didn’t show anything alarming. Because he’s not losing weight, she wanted to try Sam on a new food with lots of fiber before getting more aggressive with a biopsy. We’ll transition him off his old food and onto the new over the course of a few days, but so far he seems to like the new food just fine.