Sunday, February 22, 2009

Birding last weekend and starting a good book

Northern Hawk Owl

Last weekend was tremendous for me in many ways.  It was the anniversary of my brothers suicide, and I needed to get away for a while.  Some long term plans fell to the wayside, of which I was sorely disappointed by, however it was long coming, a parting of a difficult long term friendship, that continued to leave me torn, empty and saddened.
  Another friend (ty Dianne) came to my rescue and helped me get onto another birding trip. Mark and I were to miss the first day altogether, but it was well worth the journey.
  It was great to bird with old friends, and with Ken, who taught me so very much when I first started getting serious about birds.  The company was refreshing, SO refreshing to Mark and I.  Mark has actually decided to take the class with me again when it starts up. It is offered by the local Audubon, and was a great help for me in the beginning.
  The highlight of this trip was really the journey itself. It is always the path that we take, in our search for something else. Once we get there, the bird may or may not be there, you never know, but you see so much along the way. The most beautiful of Rough Legged Hawks. Had I been alone I would have taken pictures with my scope. I am hoping for a 50x lens soon, for further distances.  I learned on this trip that an owl very close needs to be taken with my zoom and a hand held camera.  I learned much on this journey.  White Winged Crossbills go where they want, and may appear in the morning hours, oblivious to the fact you don't arrive to be honoured by their beauty until later in the day. They do NOT care about such things!
  I also learned that you cannot escape sorrows if you have your cell phone, and it happens to ring while you are in an area of reception. No missed calls,that you could ignore. A live phone call in the moment; announcing the tragic death of a beloved and talented friend, whose passion and music is lost forever.
Bipsy's website is
  I don't know if this will work at all. This link.
I find so many things in life do not work for us,and that is how it is. I lost my friend.  She died two days before the anniversary of my brothers death, which was only 3 years ago.
  This week I started a new journey.  I lobbied for Environmental Lobby Day at our state capital, something I have always wanted to do. I was the only one from the 31st District, and had a long term Republican Senator, whom I cannot seem to get out of the office with my vote.
  I am hoping to find a way to help Conservation Northwest, with the many projects they have going.  It is a small organization and needs help. They get down to business, no middlemen in this organization. My states wildlife benefits from their efforts more than any other organization as far as I can see. I hope this summer is filled with lots of 
field work, and maybe office work that a non office volunteer can help with.
  I started a new book today PrairyErth. About a county nearly in the center of the U.S.
and its history. I have only just started, but it has put that drive in me that only a good book can. I cannot wait to read it all. I will also be sorry when it is done. it is about the history of a county from my home state Kansas. Just reading the first couple of chapters have made me homesick. No one who has not really watched the land there, can ever understand such a varied and rare, rugged beauty. It compels me to know more, and to understand its history. So now I am going to understand, see a bit deeper, dig a little further. 
  I am posting a couple of Northern Hawk Owl shots with this rather long posting.  I have much to do, to think about today, much to contemplate about my own self, and the re-awakening of the conservationist that is in me. To think it all started with my dad taking me fishing, and letting me play with the worms he fished with. He pointed out the Egrets and Pelicans that were on the lake we fished. But the magic of the Kingfisher, which I did not see, captivated me. I imagined a royal bird with a golden crown. It was years later, when my boys were babies, I actually got to look at one through binos.  I have not been the same since

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