Monday’s Blog-Eyeshine

Their eyes reflect a bright gleaming eyeshine. In the bird world, the Nightjar’s

 show an orange-red eyeshine, the Chuck-will’s Widow eyes show pink or orange eyeshine.The Bobcat, Domestic cat, and so many more species display bright eyeshine giving the avid birdwatcher a hint of their whereabouts in the night sky. 

The majority of these glowing eyes belong to mammals, but spiders, alligators, and bullfrogs are a few other creatures with reflecting eyes. Some night birds also have eyes that glow in the dark, but their eyes do not have a tapetum layer. Scientists are still trying to solve the mystery of their source of eyeshine.

Animals that display the brightest eyeshine are nocturnal having more rods (light receptors) and fewer cones (color receptors) in their retinas than animals with no eyeshine at all. As a result, they have excellent night vision, but most are color-blind.  
(My source,

 Once again, My Virginia grandsons have provided me with these facts about hard to spot birds in the night time forests. 

Our extended family is still on a high after our second youngest grandson celebrated his bar mitzvah this past weekend.
I did not encounter the animal-like eyeshine on those days, but I did see “eye shine” in the orbs of our family members and the bar mitzvah boy himself. The thrill, the pride, the love and the joy were reflected in the eyes and hearts of all of the attendees. 

Corey’s Drash (interpretation of his Torah reading) inspired us and presented us with thoughts above and beyond the scope of the average 13 year old. He did it with well researched facts, in his own words and with great humor.  This blog will stay short and sweet, in keeping with my Message in a Minute title, but only because I am still ingesting the wonderful event (simcha) and seeing our fabulous family members and dear friends. 

Further, in my brief research, I have learned that a band calling themselves EYESHINE has reached stardome. A band, based in Los Angeles, and calling itself Eyeshine first found success in 2006 with a unique blend of pop punk and post grunge, a genre called edge rock.  Eye Shine, two little words, so much nuance and meaning. May your eyes shine in the joy of life.

 Eyeshine is an American underground rock band formed in 2004 by front man Johnny Yong Bosch

Animals that display the brightest eyeshine, such as the bobcat, have more rods (light receptors) and fewer cones (color receptors) in their retinas than animals with no eyeshine. As a result, they have excellent night vision, but most are color-blind.

The majority of animals displaying eyeshine also are nocturnal animals.

CHUCK-WILL’S-WIDOW Caprimulgus carolinensis A big brown nightjar of … Like other nightjars, shows pink or orange eyeshine in headlight beams at night.

First frost bonus

First frost means many things to many people. Some love it, some dread it, some welcome it, others just plain shiver.   Residing in the latter category, my level of appreciation was pretty low until learning a fact from my savvy 15 year old grandson Alexander escorted by his brother Corey, 5 days away from his Bar Mitzvah celebration.  They live on a farm nestled in a hollow in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia.  On a hike along the wooded edge of the farm’s branch of the Hardware River (a stream) Alexander picked some fruit from a small tree.  He took a cautious bite of the fruit making a face reflecting his sharp distaste for the fruit in question. “It is an American persimmon,” he declared, “much smaller and deeper red than the Asian Persimmon” often found in produce markets sporting the familiar sweet and delicious flavor. 

This tiny persimmon has a hard, shiny shell and is quite bitter, an oily and unpleasant taste that can linger for days. But, after the first frost the tiny persimmon takes on a whole new personality.  As if on cue, overnight we reached the freezing mark, the first frost of the season, changing the fruit dramatically.  Post-frost, the shell turned soft and wrinkly, the taste satisfying, sweet and delicious. 

In the morning our grandson hopped aboard our Motorhome clutching 4 of the American persimmon.  Indeed they are delicious, sweet and desirable. What a treat.  Most other plants die. shrivel or wither upon the first frost.  So with a bit of trivia in mind, the American persimmon has a redeeming characteristic, coming to life in the wake of the first frost of fall. What fun to hike through the woods, hoping to spot trees bearing such a treat; instant gratification and chemical free.

Many surprises await the hiker throughout the year, elusive treats challenging detection before forest critters claim and devour the prizes.  They could be spring fiddle heads, truffles, a variety of nuts and berries, mushrooms, edible flowers and so much more.  Let me know your favorite “secrets” of the forest?

Monday Blog; Not quite Paparazzis

A face appeared in the top segment of the bathroom window of my apartment. He balanced a protective helmet atop his head, wore overall style work clothes and a plaid shirt and held a mean paint scraper in his right hand.  It is summer and we are off the road from our 10 month adventure via motorhome. This marks the second year the painting crew will work on the facade of our vintage 1868 Cast Iron building. The guys soar from work area to work area gliding on a platform held high on a royal blue long necked ribbon of the crane. What a Herculean task they have taken on, scraping, prepping and painting the large facade of the building that started life housing a patent medicine factory appropriate to the era of its birth. As tenants, we enjoy the beautiful and sturdy wooden floors, walls of brick, some sporting graceful archways, plaster abstract shaped ceilings high above our heads and wavy, old flowing glass windows that fill most of the facade of the building.

I have adopted the habit of checking the windows for those innocent but determined faces that could appear from 7:30AM on as I may be entering the shower or other morning routines. Unannounced, they arrive to scrape and paint their way to the finish date sometime in the near future. It is a challenge to duck and avoid their unintentional gaze. 

The accidental voyeur intrusion is behind us now. We are on the road for the next few months and free from the blue long necked held platforms appearing on our windowsills.  The pigeons return as the workers depart, to poise on the window ledges cooing and wobbling back and forth communicating in language only other pigeons may understand.

We anticipate many adventures ahead of us on the road and in many campsites, where we also practise vigilance in closing window shades for privacy, keeping to the quiet hour rules and properly managing our hookups. At present, we are camped in a campground in Pennsylvania, called Shangri-La. We have stayed here many times and brought family members and guests with us. The campground is very child oriented, and on this Columbus weekend there are children and dogs everywhere managed by parents, relatives and siblings. Camping here has always been a place of transition to enter this other faze of our lives. Letting go is a process, whether it is seeing children off to kindergarten, camp, college, saying goodbye to dear friends, loosing a family member or dear friend,  We will miss family, friends, favorite cultural venues, long walks along the river, and great memories.  This year is made easier in anticipation of two of our grandsons celebrating their b’nei mitzvot in the coming months, and the adventures to come.

Life is full of change, enhanced by the ability to communicate electronically. Trying to keep on top of current vehicles to communicate is another adventure. Will we miss the hum of the blue necked crane at our windows? Probably not but we will welcome the joyous voices of children at play, hugs and kisses as we favorite people along the road, the delight of the next beautiful sunset out our rig’s windows and yet more enchanting discoveries throughout this vast and beautiful land of ours.

Monday blog

So many of you have been notably kind to ask me if they have missed seeing my blog “message in a minute.”  I have been remiss, it has been long time since my last post. What a point of frustration this is for me as I love to write. Life gets in the way, just doing so many wonderful things. I am still amazed that people care or even think of my blog posts, but I do enjoy reading blogs from people like you, so I get it. My current plan and approach is to post a blog every Monday (I am hoping to be disciplined enough to carry this through and cover many topics ad tell many stories.)

How to start again? I needed an idea. Humans love categories and classifications; such as the lineup of sibling birth order, 1st born, 2nd born…and the effects on our growth and development. Consider the theories about number of siblings, family background, family interaction, economics, parental occupations, personality traits and more. I decided to delve into the history the day of our birth has had in lore, fable and storytelling.  I looked up my birth date and day and confirmed that I am a Monday Child.  Ah, a starting point and title. 
My source:
URL of reference

Born on a MONDAY: I checked sources to see what traits are attributed to Monday births;

  • having a good memory; Hmmm, not as sharp as in the past
  • very sensitive and emotional; Yes, that is me, A constant in my life
  • spend lots of time with family, relatives and close friends, very true 
  • Harbor a love of peace and serenity and attempts to make peace; I am a mediator
  • likely to be involved in a skill-based occupation, very business minded. Skill based fits, `photography, teaching, organizing, instigating and arranging.  Business? Luckily my beloved is a business pro.
  • Monday born women may suffer from anemia related problems, weakness, insomnia and dizziness. luckily, this isn’t in my profile. I do exercise daily as suggested.
  • Girls born on a Monday grow up to be very good wives and mothers, loving and caring, taking good care of close ones. My family will have to testify to this one for me. I think I make the grade. 

This is my entry point for my blog and as always, I look forward to reader’s feedback.
Perhaps you already know your DAY of birth. If not see
I hope my future posts will be stimulating and thought provoking. How do you fit into the profile on the day of your birth? I’d love to hear from you.
Happy Fall

“Will your child be fair, graceful, or woeful? Is your baby a Monday’s child? Tradition holds that you can predict your child’s temperament based on the day of the week they were born. Fortune telling rhymes based on the weekday of birth originated in England around the 1500s. Many superstitions existed regarding the days of the week. The fortunes, personalities, and temperaments of children were considered regulated by their weekday of birth.” source