I had spent the better part of the late afternoon taking pictures of a sandpiper from the cover of my floating camera rig. He was feeding; flying back and forth between mud flats. I wanted to get a shot of him just as he was launching that showed off his beautiful wings. I kept trying but had little success, until he launched one last time and flew away and left me on the quiet end of the pond, all alone.
Rather than call it a day and exit the pond, I chose to wade over to the far shore where the young mallard family was feeding. It took fifteen minutes to slowly creep my way near them only to be spotted by the mom who immediately shepherded them out of the pond, up the bank, and northward up the creek.
Apparently out of subjects I was ready to give up and head in when I noticed flashes of light above the tall grass of the center island. It was dragonflies darting about in the last rays of the sunlight. And when I observed them through the long lens, I could see tiny sparks of light from the insects they were feeding on. With the backlight, the dark shadows, and the arc of the lens flare, the dragonflies appeared to be floating in space above a ringed planet against a star-filled sky.
I shot until I lost the light, then just floated around and enjoyed the rest of the sunset.