So I was sitting in my living room this evening, watching House on TV. Every once in a while, I'd see a violet-green swallow fly past the windows. Hooray, hooray, the swallows are back.
Then I glanced up at the mountain ridge that runs the length of this valley. For a moment, I thought I was seeing things. I reached for the binoculars, then I took a photo. The area I focused on is through the top center right window, under that patch of snow that looks like the old peace symbol.
This is what I saw:
There are twenty mountain goats in this picture. Twenty.
You might have trouble seeing twenty because two at the far right are standing next to each other and look like one goat.
Some years ago, I was lying on the couch watching the mountain and listening to the evening news on TV. I counted 31 goats spread all across this ridge. Suddenly every goat up there began moving towards the center, just to the left of where these goats are now. Within a few minutes every goat on the mountain was in a small place maybe fifty feet across.
They were so thick I could no longer distinguish them individually. They remained there for about fifteen minutes, then sauntered off in all directions. I again verified the count of 31 goats as they separated.
I thought about that for a while, why they suddenly stopped what they were doing and gathered at a central point.
I reckon they were deciding where to go for dinner.
By the way, I occasionally see bears on that mountain, too, but they are more frequently seen on the mountain behind me which is still covered in snow.