[Tweeters] Not Dragonfly Weather

Jeff Gibson gibsondesign at msn.com
Thu Nov 6 11:00:26 PST 2014

Dennis, and Tweeters,
Hey Dennis, just saw your latest post and it reminded me of a dragonfly I just saw in Port Townsend on tuesday (11/4). I went to get something out of my truck, when I discovered a small dragonfly perched in the truck bed. "Wow, pretty cool!" I thought, meaning both the bug, and the weather. It was cold and damp, and about to get damper. NOT dragonfly weather.
Luckily, I had my copy of your nice little field guide to Washington dragonflies in my truck glove box, and was able to ID the Ode as a nice bright red male Autumn Meadowhawk - a 'lifer' for me. I didn't realize they were so small. Back here in Everett for a few days, I referred to your "big book" for more information - and I noted how the Wash/Ore range is isolated from the larger North American range! Interesting.
Anyway, slamming the truck door shut, set the Meadowhawk off, and away it went - the hardy little fellow still quite zippy, despite the weather.,Back in October I had a fun experience with Dragonfly watching at Fort Worden in Port Townsend. It was a calm sunny warm afternoon, the forest, recently moisturized after the long summer drought, was alive with autumnal recrudescence, or whatever- full of singing birds, and chippy chipmunks - everybody kind of perky. At the forest edge, the airwaves were full of dragonflies, both Darners , and smaller odes which I suspected were probably Meadowhawks of some sort. As I jockeyed about for a better binocular angle - hey, the sun was in my eyes- the lights went out. Unnoticed by me until then, a dense fog bank that had been hiding behind the nearby wall of conifers came on with almost cartoon-like suddenness - I had the image of one of those old nautical charts showing the West Wind, etc, as a big cloud with blowing lips, and imagined such a thing lurking behind the firs, blowing fog. The fog came in dense ropy tendrils through the trees, and in about one minute, all was damp and dark - the dragonflies all disappeared into the woodworks.
I thought this would make a good film short - and I mean short - with sun and dragons one minute, fog and drips the next. Near the end , the fog would briefly part, and like God in one of those old Monty Python cartoons, a giant image of Dennis Paulson would appear, mumbling like thunder - "SYMPETRUM VICINUM!" Or something like that.
Well, the Weather Gods giveth the odes, and they taketh them odes away. Dennis, thanks for giving us those great books!
I guess its always Dragonfly Weather - somewhere.
Jeff Gibsonbug watcher

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