Beware of Transformer Owls

with No Comments

Funny memory

Beware of Transformer Owls


The story is legendary. My mother’s mother, Granny Dawson, was riding with my parents on a long car trip. It seemed the later into the night it became, the worse Granny’s eyesight was.

They passed an orchard of carefully spaced fruit trees lined up in a beautiful symmetry. They were tall sentinels, dark and shadowy, dotting a gently sloping hillside after sunset.

Granny pointed at the trees, excited. “Look at those Black Angus cows!”

My sisters giggled in the backseat with Granny. “Those are trees, Granny.”

Granny squinted. “Oh. I guess my eyesight ain’t what it used be.”

Later, they passed a heard of Jersey cows.

“Look at those trees! What kind of trees are those?” Granny asked,

The whole family nearly went into hysterics laughing. “Those are cows, Granny!”


Granny Dawson is long gone, but the story never fails to bring a fond memory of her and a good laugh.

They say the eyesight is the first thing to go when you start to age. Frankly, I don’t know who “they” are but they need to shut up.

Recently, my parents were telling on themselves. They had a story of their own.

My house is next door to my parents – separated by about an acre. They can clearly see the side of my house from their front porch. Our electric pole is on the side of our house facing Mom and Dad’s house.

Dad was looking out the window a couple of days ago, early in the morning, and noticed something on top of the transformer. He called my mother.

“Betty, look!” He pointed at the top of the transformer. “Is that an owl on top of Lee Ann’s transformer?”

Mom stared for a moment. The way the shadows fell across the transformer in the early light illuminated the top of the transformer in interesting patterns, but she was also fairly certain that it was an owl perched on top of the transformer.

“Yes, Joe. I think you’re right. I think I saw it turn its head.”

Dad decided he had to take a picture of the owl. After all, this was an unusual occurrence. How often did one see an owl perched in the morning so clear and so close?

Dad retrieved his camera. As he focused the viewer at the top of the transformer, he zoomed in close …. Only to realize that the owl was an illusion created by unique shadows cast early in the morning. He was disappointed, but also sheepish.

He told the story later and had the whole family laughing … “But, what’s really funny is Mom saw it too and she thought it turned its head!”

Everyone went into hysterics. Mom just grinned. Like me, she is used to the family having a good laugh at her antics. My own children laugh at me often. It’s payback, I guess.

So … I guess the moral of this tale would be to beware of those transformer owls, they just might be a sign of aging.

I supposed the eyes are the first to go … or maybe it’s the memory … I forget which.