I’m no Thoreau. In my dreams, “the natural world” would be fitted with a thermostat with which I could keep it at a comfortable 65 degrees farenheit all year ‘round. But last night around 8:40, I noticed a surprising and welcome natural phenomena: The number of fireflies floating above the lawn seemed unusually high.

We live in an older, suburban-ish neighborhood with quite a few tall trees. There’s a small creek across the street. It gets pretty dark here at night. So I never understood why the population of fireflies in this area had dropped so dramatically over the years since I was a kid chasing them across the grass with neighborhood friends. So-called “light pollution” – the human-made phenom that interferes with the bugs’ signals and is often implicated in their decline — isn’t too bad around here.

I’d love for the North Texas firefly population to return to what seemed – probably nostalgically – like a lifetime high in the 1970s. (“High,” “1970’s” – heh, heh, heh). The web article I found last night suggested no such luck.