Friday, April 13, 2012


I was planning to talk to you about Tel Arad, about the excavations at this ancient historical place, about the Canaanites and Israelites, about the first temple period, about the Hellenistic buildings - BUT you see the fox lady stole my story! 
When we arrived before everyone else at the location, early this morning, she was already there. We invaded her territory, her secret domain, her hiding place, her privacy! Walking into the ruins we startled her - suddenly she was in front of us, backing up and scuffing angrily. She would not budge, she would stay put. She ran off and returned, her eyes fierce, her gaze steadily on our movements, stealing away in one direction for flickering moments. 

We had not only invaded her territory, we had disturbed her mothering instincts and duties. Because, as soon as we spotted her swollen tits we knew that she was trying to protect her offspring from us. She disappeared behind the crumbled walls and the rubble only to emerge again some small distance away. 

She was lean and strong, and proud, can you see? Her watchful eyes searched for danger. No one else was there, only we and she. That witty mother fox, trying to threaten us away with her hoarse barking and huffing! This untamed creature was facing us very bravely. From her behavior we could guess where her small ones were tucked away, but we did not hear a sound from them. Them? We are just assuming. Maybe it was only one?

This is the dvir, דביר the Holy of Holiness in the temple, and under that wooden deck, protecting visitors from underground structures, was her nursery, HER sanctuary.

She tried to get near to it, again and again - but some fear nevertheless prevented her from completing the task.
We decided to restore her peace. We left the fortress quietly, and moved on to the lower part of the ancient city. She jumped up onto a higher wall and followed us with an observing stare, then she vanished into the fallen rocks.

Please zoom in...
Photographs by Uri Eshkar.


Dawn of LaTouchables said...

This post and THESE PHOTOS, and the way you described the scene just STOLE my breath away...and when I clicked in to zoom, ....wowwww!!!!

Bob Bushell said...

Pretty Fox, so she stole the show, well, she was beautiful. Reading your post to me, my daughter, (Yahna), was the oldest.

Misfits Vintage said...

Oooh she is wonderfully feirce and brave. Great photos. Sarah xxx

Magia da Inês said...

♫♫°º Olá!
Imagens muito meigas e agradáveis.
Bom fim de semana!


What a magic story, and how well put into words, my dear friend. I couln nearly feel her pulse.
have a lovely weekend Yael.

Anonymous said...

פשוט לא יאמן יעל, איך אתם מצליחים לצוד את הרגעים הכי יפים דרך הסיפורים המהפנטים שלך ודרך העדשה של אורי.

Hagar said...

Yaeli, what a unique experience!
It was worth it getting up so early!
Such a wonderful post! Uri's photographs are amazing as usual!
Love you!

Terri said...

Seeing wild life is so rewarding... it brings us back to the earthy life that we are so far removed from by cars and our homes. Thank you for the pictures and the story!

TarracoStyle said...

me encantan los animales en su habitad salvaje.

Friko said...

I am so glad you left her in peace. It doesn't do to disturb a nursing mother.

Wonderful photos.

Annuk said...

Oh Yael, this proud fox mommy's story really stole my heart!!! Such a harsh place to live... and what a beautiful, brave and proud animal! I hope all people visiting this place will respect her as much as you did.

zsazsazsu said...

incredible how a great model the fox is ! It's like she knew she would appear on a great blog in an ever so great story ;)

Mrs. D said...

What a beautifully written post :) I love the little fox, she is so beautiful!

Hilde said...

What an amazing post, Yael! You were so lucky to meet her. Love love love the photos, thanks for sharing!!

glazedOver Pottery said...

So consistent are a mother's instincts!

Lisa said...

WoW ... she is sooo beautiful..♥
Well it was prophesied that area would become a resting place of jackals and foxes .. it is true!!
Wonderful experience you had!!!

Eva said...

How daring and courageous a mother can be! She is so determined to protect her own one(s) that she doesn't even care about her own welfare. And yes, she's beautiful. An extiting story, thanks for sharing!