This Thing Called Courage

Friday, May 08, 2009

New Neighbors


For the past few weeks I've been hearing a different sound coming from the wonderful woods out back (which once more have become a crytic, secretive green place, now that the trees have leafed out). Thrrrp thrrrp thrrrp, usually in groups of three. I had my suspicions as to what it might be, and confimed them yesterday by going to a birding site that had wav files of various birds' calls-- it's the beautiful Red Bellied Woodpecker. Go here to hear it, then scroll down to Red Bellied Woodpecker: http://www.mbrpwrc.usgs.gov/id/songwav.html
I've never had one of these in my woods before, and my hope is that there is a couple nesting out back. I can clearly hear the bird while sitting at my computer here, which looks out onto the woods and, believe me, I couldn't be more pleased if the Queen of England was out there.


I also mentioned that the wetlands out in the woods, at the bottom of the gully, have peepers in them now, for the first time since I've been here (ten years). Oh joy! Oh rapture! When I got back from drumming last night around midnight, I could clearly hear them under the light of the full Pink Moon (as the Native Americans called it) and it sure is a haunting, wondrous sound. I'm not sure why they didn't inhabit these woods before, but I'm pleased as punch they're out there now- it's like my own private little peeper arena, and I stand out back, facing the dark woods listening-- I really could listen forever. My joy will be complete if it turns out the bats are back as well-- local bats have been suffering from a horrible new 'powdery nose' bat virus, and their numbers have plummeted as a result. I will let you know.


We also have a new member of the family to welcome. Michele Rose Hayes was born Monday evening at 10:58, and I was there for much of the birthing process, keeping track of Carol's contractions and the baby's heartbeat. Pretty amazing stuff. Things happen in threes and so it has proved this week, and they all have to do with new life-- Michele, the red-bellied woodpecker, and the peepers who have just taken up residence out back. Oh, and I harvested my first gift fromt he garden yesterday-- a couple of very succulent and crisp fresh radishes, specifically French Breakfast radishes, which I diced and tossed into my salmon salad lunch yesterday. Mmmm mmmm good!

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