Saturday, April 21, 2018

Daffodils - NO. April blizzards - YES.

It's not even mid-April anymore, it's past that.  First day of Spring?  Long gone.  We had a few days where you could go outside and rake the flower beds, things were sprouting - looking green.  The feeder was visited by RED and GOLD finches, cardinals, along with the junco's, woodpeckers, chickadees, and nuthatches.  And robins.  Robins are "always" a sign that the weather has turned.  Not this year.


John and I saw a couple as we walked to the car the other day.  We knew they were suffering because they were lethargic and puffy.  They had found the one place on the lawn where the snow had not covered everything...and they were looking for worms.  Neither of us held out much hope that they would find anything - but as we stood next to them and watched, one pulled out a long worm and the two of them feasted.
"They're really having a tough time. When you see them puffed up, that means that they're trying to hold in that body temperature. So that's the time you can walk up to them, get them, and bring them in. We've already had, in the last 24 hours, about 20 robins admitted," said Lori Bankson, Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary animal curator.
Terry Goettelman of Sturgeon Bay dropped off two robins at the Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary Tuesday morning.
"I have a soft spot for birds, and I see that they're struggling because of the snow, and we're trying to do everything we can," Gottelman said.
The birds typically don't eat seeds, so they scour area fruit trees, looking for food.
"These are the guys that are just getting back with other migrants. They're already thin, they're already tired," said Bankson.

In this episode of the podcast 1A, there is a great discussion about the current situation facing migratory birds in the Trump Administration.  MIGRATORY BIRDS for pete's sake!!  The episode description:  

One hundred years ago, Congress passed a law to protect migratory birds — but our feathered friends could be in danger after a Trump administration decision limited the law's effectiveness. We discuss why one of America's oldest environmental laws now faces a new legal battle, and what this could mean for the birds — and the environment. 

Now.  On to this - bunches all over the house:

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Long Car Rides

This is how you feel when you 

spend too long

in a car and really cannot find a comfortable position

for any length of time. 

The ways we chose to propel ourselves from one place to another. Interesting.  Rebecca Solnit has that great book about Ireland, A Book of Migrations.  She writes (among many things) about walking across the West of Ireland, an area I am familiar with. I sometimes long to be there with such a fierceness that it surprises me.  A part of me feels at home there.

Four years  ago, on the train stuck somewhere around Pittsburg, I picked up a journal and started scrawling;

"Started my trip to DC yesterday.  There is something about train travel that I find calming - it puts me in a certain state of mind.  Maybe it is just the traveling period - but I don't think so.  On a train you get the voyeuristic delight of passing through other peoples lives - whether it is their graffiti or the junk that they have accumulated in their backyards or the lights they leave on late at night as the train howls through their little town." 

I do remember driving to this town with Janelle once.  Making the decision to do so late one night - not calling our parents to say where we were until we had arrived.  Janelle had an aunt that lived here  Rita's sister I think.  I remember parking on a street that was wayyy up and on a hill.  I remember going to the door - and I remember someone opening the door.  Funny I don't remember anything after that. Mostly I remember the heady freedom of doing it.  Singing.  Probably smoking pot.  We just wanted an adventure.

Forty-some years later and I am l still loving the adventure.

Travel offers the opportunity to find out who else one is, the collapse of identity into geography I want to trace.....In 1968 I stood up in sophomore English and raged about having to read short stories on the day after students had been shot at Kent State.  I was told to sit down.  I don't remember any words of understanding or comfort.  Not long after that, I was in DC marching on behalf of ending the war and civil rights.  Those issues were driven by young people. 

I was looking at a 2003 copy of APERTURE this morning and saw this image by Don McCullin (taken in 1968).    Perhaps this image struck me because I recently watched the AMERICAN MASTERS program about John Lennon.   Or because I saw images of Paul McCartney at the March for Our Lives in NYC.

The image is prophetic down to the glasses, and has been described that way before - particularly when it was published in A DAY IN THE LIFE OF THE BEATLES.

 I was married, living in Duluth when Lennon was killed (12/8/80) and remember calling my high school boyfriend - just because I wanted to hear his voice.

'One of My Best Friends Was Killed in Gun Violence.' Paul McCartney Honors John Lennon at March For Our Lives


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