Flander's Lane, Washington Maine

Flander's Lane is named after my grandfather, Roland Flanders. It is a short dirt road with a few camps set on Washington Pond. There are tales that Flander's Lane is haunted. At least that's what my grandfather says.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Sun Turtle

Sun TurtleAnother day, another kayak trip on Washington Pond. Today we take a trek around the bend to a wooden bridge that was just built about a year ago. It looks like they plan to build a new home on the small peninsula found across from our cabin on the "wild side" of the lake. (I hope the new inhabitants like coyotes. There's tons of them over there).

The cove that goes under the bridge is home to lots of bull frogs and sun turtles. When ever we enter that area of the lake, we see so many colorful heads of little sun turtles poking up out of the lake.

If we are real quiet, and just allow the kayak to glide up to the bridge, we don't even bother the sun turtles, and it's easy to dip a hand under them and hold them. They don't even seem to mind. The two of us take a little while to look them over. Sun turtles are so colorful. Their shell is dark green and black, their heads are mostly dark green with bright yellow stripes. The underside of their shell has a lot of orange stripes, with a cute yellow belly.

The average conversation goes like this: Sun Turtle, "Oh! Don't eat me, don't eat me!" Then I go, "I won't eat you, I just want to have a look at you." Then the turtle says, "Oh, OK, in that case, I guess it's alright." Then I tell the turtle, "You are so beautiful." The turtle always blushes a bit, and says, "You think so? Gosh!" (You see, sun turtles are very humble, and easily embarrassed). Then I say, "Can my daughter have a look at you?" And they always say, "OK, just be careful." "Of course" I say, and we have a wonderful time just spending a few moments together looking each other over. I think the turtles are just as interested in having a look at my 2 year old as my 2 year old is interested in the sun turtles. It's a nice exchange.

Returning the turtle to the muckOnce we are done, my little comrade returns the sun turtle back to the murky muck and decaying leaves that make up the cove under the bridge. It's kinda gross, but hey, it's their home, so who am I to judge?

Soon these small turtles will be a foot or more across their shell. They seem to grow so fast. Each time we return to this spot, they've doubled in size. We've gotten to know a few by name, and it's nice to have gotten to know some of the locals during our stay here. We've exchanged addresses, and plan to keep in touch over the winter.


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