Canada Goose

you can tell my camera doesn’t have a viewfinder- odd framing and focus on this curious goose

An important part of birding in a city park is not being upset or caught up in what your fellow humans do. Last fall while I was volunteering for the international coastal cleanup we were scouring the edge of the lake, picking up every last bottle cap and cigarette butt. Right behind us, someone walked up and dumped at least twenty pounds of leftover food onto the ground- rice, meat in a big congealed lump. They were feeding the birds. Our supervisor said “I know I shouldn’t let it get to me, but it is so bad for the birds and the lake” and proceeded to shovel the food into one of our ready garbage bags, annoying the geese who were eyeing their takeout.

There is a lot for me to learn about the politics and science of feeding the birds (don’t even get me started on the cats…) But for now I am trying to just observe and not jump to any conclusions. Luckily for me there are spots farther into the park where you can avoid rotting food and begging animals.

Chilly Daffodils and Birds

They know the cold won’t last

Great walk today in the sunny park and then plenty of time for a cozy afternoon writing and knitting. I saw so many birds. I wish I knew what they are, but at the same time I know that this moment when every identification is exciting and there is so much learn is very precious. Perhaps if I keep going with my observations in a few years I will go on a walk like I did today and see nothing new, nothing I can’t identify immediately. I could be bored instead of fascinated and alert.

look, a rock

But then of course if you know all the birds you can move onto plants and rocks and fungi, etc. for ever. When I was a child I very much wanted to be a geologist when I grew up and my father built me a specimen box that I kept my labeled treasures in. When I am out looking and learning I get to feel that thrill of collecting and naming and the wide open feeling of childhood.

oh god there are different kinds of sparrows…who knew????

What I like about the “Urban Monk” is his emphasis on rest and renewal. Very important. Get more sleep and good sleep and take moments to relax throughout your day. In the later chapters he goes off on more advanced techniques for removing heavy metals from your bones and other complicated things. I think rest rest rest is enough for me for now.

Cold Snap

The overheated tulip leaves have been felled by cold outside my door and it is a great weekend for a quick duck walk followed by finishing up construction of a Remington sweater of my own design. Remington is an alpaca who lives in upstate New York and his coat is very soft and beautiful- I purchased some in Saratoga Springs to make a simple sweater. I’ll post a picture when I’m done.

Things I like right now:

Feminist Bird Club

Urban Monk 

Scotland Out of Doors

Backyard and Beyond

Witch Hazel in Bloom

springy Witch Hazel in bloom in Prospect Park

Not only did I find these blooms, I learned a new duck today.

my apologies, this Ring Necked Duck was shy

Last week I tried comprehensive meal planning, but with the weather jumping all over the place I found that I had no interest in my prepped rice and beans by Wednesday. My idea was to avoid eating a lot of processed food and generating a lot of fast food waste. I think I prefer sandwiches and snacks so we’ll try that this week.