I was always a bug, mud, tadpole, spider, turtle lover, plant identifier as a child, turning over rocks for crickets, putting tuna in a glass jar to catch beetles. Some how as I grew taller, I no longer stooped to exploring the earth and began reaching for airy, prosaic things, such as career.
I rarely make New Year’s resolutions, but I somehow ended up with one: find more fungi. After the last rain, I’d been poking around in the canyon near our house for fungi. A book titled, “Mushrooms Demystified: A Comprehensive Guide to the Fleshy Fungi,” by David Arora is on my way to me. Can't wait. I have a feeling it will arrive tomorrow with the postman.
A few days ago, I found some Candy Caps, which tend to be russet in hue.
They taste sweet--according to some, like maple syrup. I can tell the difference between a bolete (spongy beneath) and an agaric (gill-like underneath). I found 2 Boring Brown Boletes (Yup, that’s what its named) in our backyard, some pebbles embedded in their flesh.
The most astounding find was to find Honey Mushrooms on a hiking trail. These are parasitic and kill the trees upon which they grow. I am told they are tasty.
Also discovered some whitish boletes at the base of the dead Monterey Pine. I don’t know what they are, but I certainly won’t be eating them until an expert tells me it's fine. Some mushrooms love to grow among the thistles and the stinging nettles in the canyon. I suspect they are delicious and the prickly neighbors keep the deer and me at bay.
These days, my eyes are always scouring beneath the trees or dead wood for these magical little
entities, a symbol of decay, rebirth and danger. And while I discover the muddy earth, once again, I thrill in the fragrance of wet leaves, I hear the troops of titmice as they shake the golden poplar and arroyo leaves to the ground.
When I do discover some fungi, I squeal as if finding rarest of gifts. All in all, it's not the mushrooms that are important, but all the things I wouldn not have seen, felt, touched, smelled or heard. Anyone want to join me?
Thank you to several RR members for asking about me. The fall of 2008 has been a bad health year, but I am ready to be active and vigorous in 2009. I am currently working on the jacket art for my graphic novel, “Forget Sorrow.”
Causes Belle Yang Supports
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