We hadn’t been to Sacramento’s Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area, for birding, the past couple of years. It’s a dream come true in the right conditions, and yesterday was one of those days. At 4 pm the temperature was around 44 degrees, damp, with just enough of a breeze to send the wind through my jeans. Glad we brought the Rav4, since the road was rutted with plenty of potholes and slippery with mud.
There were Snow Geese, Black Neck Stilt, Northern Shoveler, Pintale, Cinnamon Teal, Common Egret, Great Blue Heron, a murmuration of Starling, Coot, Canada Geese, Red Shouldered Hawk (though we had misidentified it before running into some locals with expensive glass who let us peep through their spotting scopes.) There was a Plover I could not identify and at least one Swallow that disappeared before we got a decent look.
We saw a flock of Snow Geese take off maybe 1/2 mile away and right beneath them a storm of rusty shaded ducks took off and filled the sky. Our spotting scope friends said they saw an Eagle swoop in and that’s what spooked the mass. There’s something about that many birds in one place that fills me with joy.
On our way out we stopped for this sweet little reflection pond. Back toward the Snow Geese, the sky was strewn with ribbons of migrating birds, going in so many directions. At one point there was a murmuration of geese, that broke into dozens of Vee formations, some of which flew right over us.
If you’re ever in the area, give yourself time to wander around, and bring mud boots. And remind me to bring more than one set of binoculars, and my Lumix camera with the 600mm lens.
Twas the Twelfth Day of Christmas my true love gave to me, stockings galore, a fire in the fire place, a full cup of coffee, and a strong west swell. Not that I’m surfing, since my back is not back from its hiding place yet.
The day is crisp and clear. Surfers were surfing before I rose from the bed. We are busy at work preparing food for our family who will join us for presents in the not too distant future.
Thanks to Mollie for making this fabulous Twelve Days of Christmas Wreath.
Merry Christmas to all. May this day bring you peace and joy.
Twas the Ninth Day of Christmas my true love gave to me, a ribbon of spun cloth and my 100th Follower, All Things That Dogs Blog. It’s set in a retro Apple framework.
My brother and his wife raise Guide Dogs for Guide Dogs of America. Our mom was legally blind by the time I was twelve, but it sure didn’t stop her from catching us poking each other or grabbing cookies from the jar. She said she had eyes in the back of her head, and they seemed to work just fine. 20-20 hind sight, I’d guess you’d say.
I’m sure she would love to see Bev and Allen’s current Guide Dog in Training, Bud. Hats off to them for guiding 17 Dogs into service. So go Bud, Go. You’ll be number 18 if you keep your nose clean and pass all your tests.
Bev and Allen have brought unwavering love and devotion to train all those dogs who bring their skills to those who cannot see.
I am grateful for my vision. I am grateful for my family. I am grateful to be alive.
Twas the Seventh Day of Christmas my true love gave to me, a turtle and some thoughts on current events. There are two turtles in our Christmas wreath. I found the first on the third day of Christmas. With all the horrific news, this turtle may want to pull inside and hide in a hole. Or maybe it’s me. But why? Compared to Allepo, Berlin, and Turkey it’s pretty darn tame outside. But the news seems slanted toward one catastrophe after another. I bring it home, over and over.
Then I remember to breathe and an old adage springs from my subconscious. When I don’t have time to meditate two times a day, I need to meditate three times a day. Or when I don’t have time for one walk, I may need two. And when current events pile up and spill on the floor, maybe take time to do something fun.
So I printed a nice photo for my dad’s Christmas Present. A simple photo in a lovely little frame of him, me, my son, and his daughter. Four Generations, you can see it here. I’m not the first in the family to pull this off, but it’s the first time I’ve been in the photo.
The waves have been small in the dog days. Fires burn the state and cast a faint filter on coastal light bringing fall into focus a shade early. Our street is strewn with red and yellow leaves. I’m betting on an early winter but I have been wrong the past three years.
Two SUPs standing sentinel at the 24×7 L.L. Bean Bike, Boat, and Ski store in Freport, ME this past October. It was hovering around 40 degrees with a hint of breeze. The last thing I could think of was paddle boarding, but I did give these two a look over.