Saturday, October 16, 2010
On Thursday, I was running between appointments (late as usual), then came to a screeching, abrupt halt, in the middle of a busy street. I gasped. Even at breakneck, late-as-usual speed, I had spotted a thing of breathtaking beauty. I’d narrowly missed stomping on a dead dragonfly.
How often, other than in a museum, do you really get to study a dragonfly? Even in the museum, they are lost to the bug specimens with the louder personalities: the rhinoceros beetle, the bird-eating spider, the hairier heebie jeebies. Out in the world, dragonflies whizz by in a blur: feigning left, right, who knows where.
I photographed this critter on a lightbox. The weird and changing colours are, I guess, from the strobing of the fluorescent light.
Oh, and if you look closely at the top image, you’ll see the tiny silhouette of an ant who seems to have come along for the ride (lunch).
The dragonfly’s wingspan is 11cm, by the way.
When I found him, I was reminded of solo travel. Don’t you miss company most when you behold something wonderful? You have to make that split second decision: whether to come over like a blethering lunatic, exclaiming your rapturous joy out loud to the world. Or you hold that shiver of excitement tight inside.
Of course I came across like a blethering lunatic. Then I thought some of you might like to see him too. If you want, you can pop by for a cuppa and a closer look and we’ll exclaim out loud.