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Dragonfly Gymnastics

Tuesday, August 14, 2012


"Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take but by the moments that take our breath away." Hilary Cooper

I have a friend, Peter Rasberry, who has been a friend for over 20 years. We visit he and his wife & daughter in Waterloo and Tobermory, they travel here to be with us in beautiful Haliburton, and we go on adventures to Killarney, Temagami, Grand Manan etc.  We have many years of outdoor adventures together. The title of this article comes from his blog (Peter is

an outdoor educator with the Waterloo Board of Education and he has a blog to tell stories and share his incredible photographs with interested folks). His blog is  outdooredguys.wordpress.com .  Peter is an avid naturalist and

a gifted photographer. It is his passion.  He finds the beauty through the lens of his camera.  His pictures often take my breath away.  This week he arrived at our home for a visit and showed me a recent favourite  picture of his.  It is of a dragonfly that appears to be doing a headstand (I think it is doing a handstand.  The picture is stunning.  The dragonfly  is balancing

on it's  6 legs.  It  is doing yoga!) This pose, of being in a headstand/ handstand  - in odo lingo (dragonfly language) it's called obelisking. Among the more than 300 North American species of dragonflies, only 30 or so species are known to do this.  In hot weather they perch and raise their abdomens in an effort to reduce the surface area exposed to the sun.  It is

so elegant and graceful and strong.  When I looked at this picture (and you can see it on his blog) I immediately thought about the power and beauty of movement and of noticing the movement that is all around us.  Everything moves in many different  and unique ways.   None of us are meant to sit

still forever. Over the years, Peter and a whole group of us, have gone on camping adventures and he has many pictures of us jumping off cliffs, paddling beside loons and making homemade cinnamon buns over the fire.   A few years ago 13 of us (6 kids, 7 adults) went a camping trip to Grand Manan

and Peter took pictures of all doing cartwheels on a beach - all together. It is such a great picture because we are all moving... and some of the cartwheels are more professional than others, but it doesn't matter.    We were all happy and goofing around and he caught the energy in his pictures. Dragonflies do handstands, I do a very basic version of a cartwheel.  It's

all movement.  It's all good for our bodies.  And it's all about paying attention.

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