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A Birthday Limerick for Helen October 22, 2017

Posted by indigobunting in Uncategorized.

Procrastinitus Interruptus
was a blog by an artful seductress.
On Helen we crushed.
O’er her writing we gushed.
But sadly, today we get bupkis.

Clearly I am still harboring abandonment issues. Happy birthday, Helen!

Goloptious October 20, 2017

Posted by indigobunting in Uncategorized.

When I got home from vacation, I quick-had-to-make-some-granola because we were having overnight houseguests. As I was assembling the ingredients, I noticed I was getting a little low on honey (local wildflower honey…mmmmm) and made a mental note to get some. But at the farmer’s market, I decided to wait a little longer until I was a little lower. I’m on a postvacation budget, after all.

The Winnie-the-Pooh song goes through my head:

It’s very, very funny,
’Cos I know I had some honey;
’Cos it had a label on,
Saying HUNNY.
A goloptious full-up pot too,
And I don’t know where it’s got to,
No, I don’t know where it’s gone—
Well, it’s funny.

Several hours upon my return from the farmer’s market, my friends arrived bearing gifts, including some local honey from their town in New Jersey (bearing honey, one might say). The next day, I went to a friend’s small birthday gathering, and she and her husband gave us some of their honey (so local that their bees may have visited my yard). Just five days after that, another friend came over to talk some business with Tim and brought some of his honey (he lives only a couple of miles away).

Now I have a goloptious full-up pot too. Thank you, kind friends.

A Birthday Limerick for Mali October 19, 2017

Posted by indigobunting in Uncategorized.

Two days ago I startled to realize that certain people have birthdays this week and those certain people had requested, back in December, that limericks be written for said occasions. I had ten months’ warning, and I pretty much forgot about it. It’s hard to say what would have happened if I’d begun work immediately. Without further ado, here is a birthday limerick for Mali, whose birthday is October 20, which it already is in New Zealand.

She’s seventeen hours ahead,
which makes it tomorrow instead.
When Mali, let’s say,
sips Thursday’s chardonnay,
it’s safe to assume I’m in bed.

6BY3: Quarterly Report October 18, 2017

Posted by indigobunting in Uncategorized.
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Our recent vacation was scheduled around both ends of a long weekend: a birding ecostudies trip on Monhegan Island in Maine. We normally don’t splurge on such things, but a former neighbor of mine was one of the leaders, and we couldn’t pass on the combination of birds/time spent with her.

Without those birding experts, we would never have been able to identify the confusing fall warblers in their nonbreeding plumage. Nor would we have been sure of certain sparrows or sparrowlike species. With hired guides, my annual totals go up, without question.

The group as a whole listed 100 birds or so; I listed 73 species for the trip, adding 22 species to my 2017 list (although here I will tell you only about 19, as the last day of the trip was October 1, the first day of the next quarter. I am sure you can’t wait to hear what those last three were.) (And, for the record, one bird on the list was a species I had seen/heard multiple times but somehow had failed to list during the second quarter.)

Highlights for me were seeing gannets (always a highlight for me), watching a snipe feed by a pond, and observing so many raptors. The most fun sighting of the quarter may have been the gray jays we ran into in the Adirondacks in early September. But that’s another story.

Without further ado, here’s the list: common tern, black-throated green warbler, gray jay, red-breasted nuthatch, palm warbler, greater yellowlegs, lesser yellowlegs, northern gannet, black guillemot, laughing gull, peregrine falcon, great cormorant, sharp-shinned hawk, merlin, blue-headed vireo, golden-crowned kinglet, ruby-crowned kinglet, American pipit, clay-colored sparrow, white-throated sparrow, Cape May warbler, blackpoll warbler, dickcissel, Savannah sparrow, Lincoln’s sparrow, rusty blackbird.

Year-to-date count at this quarter: 141. (2012: 110. 2013: 173 [which turned out to be that year’s total]. 2014: 116. 2015: 124. 2016: 113.)

Vacation: Defined October 17, 2017

Posted by indigobunting in Uncategorized.

To qualify as a real vacation, in my opinion, these conditions must be met:

  • It lasts at least a week.
  • One does not spend it at home.
  • One does not spend it visiting relatives in their homes.
  • One does not take work along.

By this definition, Tim and I recently took our first vacation in two years.

Lamentation October 9, 2017

Posted by indigobunting in Uncategorized.

Only twenty-seven days after I heard the news that Mlle Vague was dying, she did, and though I was expecting it, checking every day, still, when the hard truth of it surfaced, I gasped aloud and felt pain, for Deloney and for all of us, mixed with relief for the end of hers, and that night I went to a concert (Seu Jorge Presents: The Life Aquatic, A Tribute to David Bowie), and even though I had procrastinated buying tickets for weeks, I was, oddly, front row and center, so close to Seu Jorge and his guitar, so close that I could grasp his hand at the end (and did), and he performed many songs from Ziggy Stardust, Mlle Vague’s first album—impeccable taste, you must admit—and it was a beautiful tribute to the late great Bowie but for me, a beautiful tribute to the mysterious, fetching, loved-by-even-we-who-never-met-her Mlle Vague, and I felt lucky to be in that time and space to consider, vaguely, a possible starman waiting in the sky or perhaps the Mademoiselle herself, which is a lovely, comforting thought.