20-Second Videos From Maine

By Terry Golson

I’ve always been one to wash my hands. I’ve cooked professionally in kitchens. I’ve taken food safety courses.  I know how important it is. But I have to say that washing one’s hands for 20 seconds can seem like an interminable amount of time! Have you set a watch to it? Are you really washing for that long? And if you are truly soaping and rinsing your hands for that long, do you find yourself doing it with tension, frustration, or perhaps a tad too much frantic effort?

Think of hand washing as a small, calming moment of self-care. To help you out, I’ve made several 20-second videos for you to wash your hands by. These were taken during a five-mile hike in my backyard yesterday.

There’s a mallard drake on the far side of this pond. The first 4 times that I hiked by, he startled up and away. Yesterday, though, he calmly paddled about. It’s nice to be a known neighbor.


We’ve had a deluge of rain, and the standing water in these low spots is deep and clear. The woodpeckers have been shredding that dead tree, but there was no-one about yesterday.


I don’t know if this stream will be a trickle in the summer, but right now the water sheets off of this rock.


I could watch this for a lot longer than 20 seconds! Mesmerizing.


Finally, here’s a serene view of a corner of the marsh that my house faces.


Time is a funny thing. It telescopes in and out. When I wash my hands for the requisite amount of time, it seems like ages. But these snippets of videos each seem shorter than 20 seconds, so much so that I double-checked them to make sure that they were long enough!

Tell me about a special 20 seconds in your day.

7 thoughts on “20-Second Videos From Maine

  • Judy

    Ah, that was lovely Terry. I always start my morning with your instantgram (I’m not a member, so I don’t post comments, but I love the ones of Scooter), followed by your wonderful Cooperative Horse blog. You, Tonka, the Maine woods, wildlife, et. al. are keeping a lot of us sane. Many thanks!

  • Miriam Hedderson

    Hi Terry and Steve,
    We’re really enjoying every one of your frequent posts it’s a tough time and a long haul. I can imagine how much you are missing Tonka. We’ll get through this….but, yes, it’s hard!
    Here, I do solitary walks on our road – 8 to 10K – daily (rain or shine). I saw a Mallard drake in the creek along my route. We have woodpeckers on our suet feeder – a Pileated three times a day. I have fabric and yarn in my stashes which to a sewer/knitter are like nuts to a squirrel.
    My two remaining hens – almost 9 – are enjoying spring. Golda is showing her age, but Lola is the size of a small goose and is still laying every second day. She was never a good layer, but now is a changed bird.
    Keep on keeping on – your life in Maine looks very satisfying and beautiful.

  • Gin

    Like you, I’ve always been one to wash my hands.
    I have a children’s Bible hymn that I sing and have checked with the 20 seconds time, it’s actually a little longer.
    It’s the same one that I softly sing over and over (the whole song) to one of my mares when she gets restless when getting shod. It calms her down, probably because she doesn’t realize I’m not a very good singer.

  • Starlucy

    I planted peas…probably for longer than 20 seconds, but pure bliss to be outside enjoying the garden again. Tomorrow, it will be spinach and carrots…and thinking beyond the now. I watched eight new baby chicks for a while today…brown leghorns and marans. I am not a traveler and lucky in that I enjoy being at home and am never bored with just watching.

    • Terry Golson Post author

      This is my first year in a couple of decades without a garden. There are several farmstands close-by so I won’t be without fresh produce. I won’t miss the work of it, but I will miss the aroma of fresh growing things and soil.

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