Wednesday, 18 August 2010


Fireflies. Lightning bugs. Fire bugs. Awesome by any name. I'd almost forgotten about them and how magical they are to watch.

This time last year, I was camping with two of my best girlfriends. Our camp was on a rock bed, complete with fire pit. Just behind it there was a green patch that formed in the drainage ditch. Once the sun went down, the fireflies came to life. Never had any of us seen so many at once. It was like being at Disneyland with the fake fireflies set to go off at regular intervals. It was like a blanket of twinkling Christmas lights. It was amazing. Just when I was lamenting the loss of goldfinches, magpies, tits, and oystercatchers, the firefly came along and reminded me that there's wonderful nature in this neck of the woods, too. I only need to go outside and find it.

Wikipedia tells me there are over 2,000 species of firefly. I'm thinking that firefly spotting would be a fantastic way to travel around. Can you imagine? New places, long quiet evenings spent watching these creepy and amazing little bugs light up, the different colors you could see: yellow, green, red.

In an unrelated story, a friend posted a news piece about a group of researchers who went camping for a week to find that the brain functions differently when away from computers. No shit. But that's a great excuse to take a vacation masked as work. And another reminder to go outside!

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