It is a snowless January in Rhode Island, and while this is almost certainly a bad thing in terms of the larger "climate chaos" discussion, for the purposes of expeditions, it is a blessing. Arriving at the RISD Farm*, we were greeted with bearably cold air, bright sunshine, and a vast expanse of low grass, bounded by dense marches of naked trees. The blue tone of the light overlaid the red in the brown tree trunks, turning them purple. Beyond that alien vegetation lay the sea, our ultimate destination.
*NB - The RISD Farm is actually not a farm, but a beach, while the "RISD Beach" which is really just a swath of grass in an otherwise urban landscape.
At the edge of the field stood a strange manmade structure, which I originally thought to be just a cardboard roof, a home to some unfortunate homeless person. Such a supposition is clearly the work of my third world instincts; anyone squatting in this place would be dead.
Upon closer inspection it became obvious that this was an intentional structure, one which was actually very well crafted and built. The process of curving those wooden arcs would have been arduous, and overall, the structure seemed to have resisted the elements quite well. Still, its "contents" for lack of a better word made me curious. Perhaps the structure simply functions as a shelter for firewood. The waterproof tarp seems to imply as much.
A green carpet led into the trees (past meadow grounds), and the tangled branches became alive with the sound of birds. Small flocks of finches scattered among branches whose long blue shadows draped over brambles and piles of wood, both natural and manmade.
Then there was a path that parted a sea of reeds.
Passing through, one could hear the sounds of a busy and constant tapping, the sound of a tiny woodpecker conducting his business not on solid wood but hardened grass. No sooner had I spotted him than he had disappeared, lost in a sea of tan and gold.
The beach, is always a crossroads. A ribbon of earth, its sands are always moving like water, and so it shares the natures of both its parents, the two worlds it separates. Here it captured the tracks of its siblings, the dogs of the land and the birds of the sea.
The nebulous combination of frames of canine motion form a probability density distribution for the existence of the beast, superimposing several slivers of time, at a time.
At the water's edge, science is conducted. Though the sample is clear and cold, undoubtedly it teems with life.