I have been thinking a lot lately about my Uncle Ray. Surrounded right now by small backyard farms and gardens, my thoughts have gone to the time when I was a child living with my grandparents and my aunts and uncles. There was one uncle in particular that comes into my thoughts these days and that is my Uncle Ray. I believed he lived only to mingle with nature. On any given day he could be seen in the garden tending his exotic chickens, fancy pheasants, quail, and game birds of all sizes, shapes and colors. Growing up I always had a goat, rabbits or some animal to call my pet for while. I was on the back of a pony before I could walk. It was a small plot of land but filled to the brim with growing vegetables and funky looking fowl.