The gravity of discovery
April 4th, 2020 | 1 Comment
So, I just learned that Isaac Newton discovered gravity while he was self-isolating in the countryside, away from the Plague in London. You might call it the gravity of discovery. Countrysides during plagues are made for discoveries. Just yesterday I discovered wild turkeys in a ragtag bunch taking over the town park where I was walking Luke. The Godzilla Gobblers suddenly covered the grassy area we had just walked. To keep from getting cornered, we needed to go past them. I managed to keep Luke entertained with dogcentric conversation about “food” and “toys” and “home,” so he would look at me and not notice the nearby 70-lb feathered dog-targets. We skimmed past the Brutus-sized Butterballs, but as we neared the car, a trio of deer stepped directly, lightly —and naively, I thought—in front of us. Instead of racing to the end of his leash and dragging me down the road after his favorite pursuit, Luke was nonchalant, as if the deer had every right to be left alone during this difficult time. This was right at noon in town, not early morning or evening, when wild turkeys and deer might normally be glimpsed, far afield, out of town bounds. But news reports abound: so many animals are reclaiming their old space—“Feral hogs overrun Canada, build pigloos along the way,” and so on. We’re all in the countryside suddenly, since our downtown cores have quieted down, returning to animal time, with now-rare sightings of humans. Those of us who *are* out and about on dog walks are going apple-dropping-on-our-heads wild with discovery.