16 February 2014

Long-Billed Curlews

I'm still meeting new people on a regular basis, and there's something they all want to know:

Do I like it here, in this multi-cultural place, where everything from climate to language spoken in church differ vastly from every land I've ever called home?

I always answer the same way:  Any place where my tomato plants survive December, January, and February is an easy place to love.

I go on to tell them it's no surprise, though because I've loved every place I've lived.  But here?  It's special, because I have the opportunity to do things I've never been able to do before.

Things like gardening in the winter, immersing myself in a second language while dabbling {sometimes} in a third, experimenting with new plants and trees {like papayas}, learning more about birds {because we live in a major birding hub} as well as butterflies.

These Long-billed Curlews, standing on one foot in the same corner of the lake every evening as they get ready for bed, are some of my new favorite things.  

The way they greet each new pair or group flying in for the evening?  Or the way they refuse to put down their second foot and walk, which would seem easier, but hop on one foot instead?  And the way they calmly {or lazily?} stay put while those strange human creatures walking by frighten the Sandhill Cranes to death?

Sheer delight.

The kind of sheer delight, in fact, that doesn't grow old in the sameness and predictability of it all.  Even though they come at the same time of day, every day.  Even though they come to the same end of the lake, every night.  Even though they seem to say the same things to each other every time I'm there to listen.

Or maybe not even though...maybe part of the delight is because these birds are steady, predictable, always there when we'd like to go visit them, aglow in the day's closing light.

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful curlew photos. I've heard they come up here in May or June and stop for a while near a distant town, but I've never seen them. I'm glad you get to see them. I agree that any place you can grow tomatoes in the winter is an easy place to love.


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