Where Did This Tree Frog Come From?

An unexpectedly froggy thing happened this a.m. once I’d archived over 250 media files stored on my iPhone to my Google Drive. Most were captured over the last few months, and even though my usual is to perform this function once or twice a month I’d simply opted to spend my time doing other things.
Once I’d cleared this mass of media from the front-end of my Photos app I was left with about twenty files, fourteen of which you see in the screenshot below-left. My standards. You know the type; of family, of special or noteworthy moments, of reference data be it logical or emotional. The stuff you can’t live without (or so you feel).
The thing is . . .
With such a clean slate I noticed a 0.14 video I didn’t recognize (2nd row from top, 1st on left). When I clicked on it to get more info I saw what appears in the image to the right. The video was titled, “San Carlos,” and dated January 31 (2021) at 9:54 a.m.
I had no idea if San Carlos was a person, place, or thing? The placeholder image gave nothing away either. So, I hit play.

It was a clip of a tree frog, but not one I’d ever seen before. The two voices you hear comment on the fact that its blue legs resemble blue jeans. Then it ends as quickly as it began. 

Now I’ve seen tree frogs before, most recently on 12/11/2016 when the Tucson homeowner I was housesitting for took me to the Botanical Gardens where she’d accompanied me a few times in the prior two years. She wanted to visit the butterfly room with me one last time before I caught my plane to NSW Australia later that day. Along the sanctuary there were display terrariums built flush into the wall, filled with all sorts of tropical tree frogs. She collected frogs and always got a thrill out of being surrounded by live, exotic, fluttering butterflies while gazing into the enormous habitats filled with the frogs. 

Yet, THIS WAS NOT MY VIDEO. Nor was it one I ever recall watching, not to mention saving. So how did it get on my phone? I HAVE NO IDEA!!!  That’s what made this so weird. 

Keep in mind what I said near the top of this writing. I had a habit of archiving my media files once or twice a month. I’ve been habitual about it for years – mostly because I take so many and need to keep the space on my phone available for the next and the next.

For those who are aware of the weekly videos series I created for a full year from 8/2021 through 8/2022 called the 1HP DiaryCast  you know the footage used as the foundation for those videos was taken at the various adventure locations where I was residing at that particular moment. Maintaining such a ritual required I take lots and lots of local shots while out walking and hiking to assure I’d captured something usable for the series.

Therefore, you can imagine the essential nature of preserving a regular archival system so I wouldn’t run out of space when attempting to film something beautiful at any given point in time. So, I know I’ve cleared this iPhone app dozens and dozens of times since January 31st of 2021 when this frog video indicates it was saved to my phone. 

To further the curiosity, on 1/21/2021 I was staying in an Airbnb in Rio Rancho, NM and have no photos, screenshots, video, emails, files, search history, social media postings, or other materials that indicate I was interested in, researching, or came across anything frog related. 

All I can say is during the last nearly two years with all of the times I’ve been intimately involved with the media in my Photo app this video was never there. NEVER. I stand by that, too. Which leaves the question pending, Where did it come from and why?

It could be symbolic – a totem reference of some kind for some yet to be known reason, with tree frogs having numerous spiritual meanings. It could have to do with the name San Carlos used as the video’s title, as San means “Saint,” and one meaning of Carlos is “free man.” Or, it could simply be that this Strawberry Poison Dart Tree Frog was native of San Carlos, Columbia – a common home of such frogs if you look it up. Yet, despite all the potential outcomes, I may never know how it got on my phone or what, if anything, it means. Nor am I going to spend any more time pondering the possibilities.  That’s just the way my life rolls; one filled with mystical oddities and joyful curiosities, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.


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Note: Banner / Blog post placeholder is a screenhot from the video I found on my iPhone of the Strawberry Poison Dart Tree Frog (aka Blue Jean Poison Dart Tree Frog). To view the full-sized, uncropped version in a new window click here.

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