TODAY THE CHURCH O’ THE PINES IS ONCE AGAIN GRAY and overcast. But temperatures are mild and welcoming out in the church aisles among the pines. And the congregation is active. A hairy woodpecker drums at breakneck pace against a distant tree with excellent acoustics. A red-bellied comments with his ‘chew, chew, chew.’ While the resident pileated laugh uproariously. (It is not hard to imagine where ‘Woody Woodpecker’ got his signature laugh.) The bluejay tribe screams and hollers. And the squirrels—ah, the squirrels. A couple of little reds trill and scold, while a herd of grays has been trampling across the cabin roof all morning, now moving their chase and pursuit (at last count 6 of them in close formation) out into the snow-covered lawn and back and forth across the deck, then up and down the tree trunks. While one bawls endlessly from a high limb, Kathy says it is getting to be that time of year and they are ‘twitter-pated.’
Meanwhile, we have had an infrequent church member joining us this week. Keeps to himself and is quiet, unlike the rambunctious folks just mentioned. The opossum has been dropping by, picking up leavings from the buffet tables, and leaving his distinctive star-shaped handprints in the snow. We like seeing the little fellow, and wonder how he manages with bare ears and tail and paws. But he seems healthy enough. All here at the COTP wish you Good Sabbath!