In a highly unusual fashion, summer came blowing in on southerly winds this past week, seeming to pass over spring and jumping straight to 80 degree temperatures. When I awoke yesterday morning to 59 degrees I grabbed my camera and headed out the door. I was hoping to photograph the red-winged blackbirds which have flown back into our area and have been heard with their brilliant singing. At a nearby lake I wandered down near the shore where there were cattails and reeds. The area was anything but peaceful. I could hear the blackbirds (although they were sitting high in the trees) and the distant cardinals and blue jays. And high overhead the geese and ducks were calling back and forth as they searched for open water. Many of our lakes have experienced an early ice-out due to the warm temperatures, but on this lake there was open water near the shore, an area of thin ice towards the center, and then another area of water. A muskrat floated by the shoreline in a lazy enjoyable manner. The morning was alive with activity and was in such stark contrast to our quiet hushed mornings of winter. As I composed this photograph I heard the sound of something or someone walking on the dried leaves across the small inlet. I looked up and found a deer watching me. She didn’t seem upset by my presence but rather curious. We watched each other for a while, and then she was joined by another deer. Perhaps they were also enjoying the morning’s early symphony, the smells of spring, and the promise of the changing seasons.