Saturday, July 6, 2013

If you can't beat em....Join em

The long days of summer are here and with that comes an overall lack of motivation to bird.  It's not as much to do with the lack of birds but rather the extreme humidity and bugs that go with it keeping me close to home just like winter as I'm as fond of the oppressive heat as I am the extreme cold and realize by now it's my normal pattern.  Plus living near the center of town in Millbury this time of the year can be rather hectic with the carnival and fireworks which usually causes more stress than it should with traffic and noise pollution so am always happy the 5th of July when my street goes back to normal and the carnies move on.  This year I'd try a different approach though as I get sick of being the town hermit so figured I'd try and live like the other 95% of the population and use this as a time to have fun, enjoy the chaos and yes- be social....Gulp.

So with that came nice cold beer as it goes hand and hand with hazy, hot and humid so would stop at the packie when I got out of work Wednesday to stock up on $30.00 worth of booze and another $50 on food!  I'd be okay with the beer as my body is used to it but my son and his girlfriend bought some fancy French vodka for strawberry daiquiris and I'd see my son trying to make them following the directions on the back of the daiquiri bottle and gasp as it was all wrong!!  My Martha Stewart instinct kicked in as I pushed him aside and told him he not only needed ice but the blender as well and got to work.  I'd taste the pre made drink mix and scowl as it was as thick as nyquil so would brush aside their suggestion of 1 part vodka to 2 parts mix and do my own calculation which would be as follows:  2 parts daiquiri mix to 3 parts ice to 1.5 parts of the fancy French vodka.  Put it in the blender, watch it mix for a bit and hope for the best.  I'd grab a small jelly glass and pour some of it in for a sample as my son and his girlfriend eagerly watched to make sure I didn't mess up their drink I demanded to make!  Sip....Hmmm......Sip.....Sip....."I think it's pretty good" I'd say as I gave them the other two sips and proceeded to grab myself a bigger glass and pour more of it in and it would be just in time for the fire works!!!  I'd then run to the bathroom, grab two small pieces of toilet paper to stick in my ears (yes I'm that neurotic about retaining my middle aged hearing ability)-and off we'd go!

Everyone would be on blankets or chairs but I'd plop myself right on my freshly mowed grass (thanks to Nori) and watch the energy of the crowds waiting for the show to begin.  Screaming children running around my yard with those light up florescent sticks (must be part of Tim's crew), a big pick up truck going by with two honkin American flags attached to both sides and Charlie Daniel's crooning from the radio, and a couple holding hands with a woman sporting a very fashionable patriotic vest that was not only red,white and blue, but blinked as it was lit!!!  I'd watch her blink on by as I sipped my cocktail and wondered if it was chargeable or battery operated.  Whatever it was, I thought all of it was fantastic.  See Kim, I'd think to myself.   You can be social and interact with mugglers- all you need is vodka to do so......... The Curious Birder strikes another level of genius again!  The fireworks did turn out lovely though as the town made them extra special this year to celebrate their bicentennial so I took some video.

You will hear my son scream "Happy Birthday America" in an effort to get our neighbor Tim going which is what he does every time there are fireworks and he's had a few and sure enough it would work.  Tim and his family has been welcome to my yard every 4th for fireworks and he brings his whole crew (50-60 people on average)-so was glad I didn't do a vegetable garden this year as I'd be at full capacity!  After the fireworks we'd go inside to eat a late dinner and then head on over to Tim's for one of his famous bon fires and sure enough that baby would be smoldering and the yard hopping!

People would be everywhere with a new guitarist this time (the other one is in rehab) and he'd be playing Johnny Cash so between the vodka and him I'd happily plop myself on a chair and be sociable!!  In fact, so sociable I'd be there until 1AM with my sign to leave when a recently divorced man tried picking me up (pattern I'm trying to break) so off I went for some much needed shut eye considering I'm usually up by 5!  I'd make my way across the fence when I'd hear the sound I'd been hoping for from across the street.  The Killdeer who live there and the ones I worried about with the fire works and the crowds.  I'd consider going over there, but with the hour and nearby carnies quickly reconsider so just sat down and listened to them for a bit wishing I had my recorder nearby.  This is the first time I've had Killdeer living so close so I've been amazed at what little sleep they get as they call all hours of the night.

I'd get up a little after 8 and be slightly hungover but after some coffee i'd have enough energy to make some blackberry jam as I have absolutely no motivation for canning jam this summer but have to do at least one batch of this considering the berries are right from my yard.  It would give me time to nap and get ready for round two of the more fireworks.  Wooot!  Not!!  I'd still not feel 100% but did manage another one of those nifty frozen drinks and a couple of beers....Just to be social of course!!  I'd wake up Friday and it would be then my middle aged body would cry in protest of the two days of abuse I bestowed upon it so called in sick leaving a message for my boss telling him I felt as if I got hit by a truck and I wouldn't be lying!  I'd spend the entire day on the couch watching TV and trying to stay cool but it would be no use.

I'd wake up today feeling marginally better but still not my usual self but did manage to get outside to get some pictures of my flowers.  I have so many sunflowers this year from the spilled sunflower seed from my winter feeding and didn't weed them this time as I was curious how many I could get.  The American Goldfinches have already landed on them to test but have quickly left as there's no seed yet.  Love seeing these yellow birds eating from these yellow flowers.

Another favorite of the goldfinches the Black-eyed Susan's.  The finches actually nibble at the base of the petals and have been doing so the past couple of days which is so fun to watch.

The Bee Balm which is a favorite of the Ruby-throated Hummingbird which is now in my yard a few times a day to get the nectar.

And the phlox the Hummingbird Moth's love so much.  Have only seen one in my yard this year but other insects (especially the fireflies and dragonflies) are out in full force.

AWFUL photo of a juvenile Tufted Titmouse who absolutely loves my Mullberries.  Most have gone bad already but there are still many ready to eat and these birds seem to do just fine mixed in with the Baltimore Orioles and Cedar Waxwings.

And last, not much recording the past week but did want to share one with you which is the high pitched call of the American Robin.  I guarantee you've had this bird doing it in your yard before as have I but in the past I assumed it to be a Cedar Waxwing-but surprise, surprise it's a robin!

How cool is that!!  Now it's time to plop myself in front of the fan again.  The town is nice and quiet and I couldn't be happier.   I'll take birds to fireworks any day and right now the ones in my neighborhood are doing just fine.

Take care all

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