It’s What I do

It’s been over a month since we returned from Colorado, and I am a little surprised at how far behind I am in posting entries.  I’d like to say that’s simply the result of being too busy, but, unfortunately, that’s not the reason.  I blame much of the delay on writer’s block; I have a feeling I want to convey, but, more and more often, I can’t translate that feeling into words.  It takes time to process pictures and adjust them to my satisfaction, but all too often I end up with pictures on the page for days before I can find the words to go with them.  

Lately, my priorities have begun to change.  As I near 80, my number one priority has become staying in shape.  So, given the choice between spending a day hiking in Mt. Rainier or The Olympics or working on a blog entry, the mountains will win out any day there’s sunshine and temperatures above 40 degrees. If we’re not hiking in the mountains and it’s a sunny day, I’ll often spend most of the day birding. 

Birding Theler Wetlands regularly isn’t as exciting as visiting Malheur, Bear River, or the Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge, but it feels like “home” and keeps me in touch with seasonal changes.  I like seeing the changes in vegetation and observing how different birds occupy the refuge at different times of the year. 

I know it’s Fall when shorebirds like this Western Sandpiper forage among the reeds along the creek.

It’s early Fall, though because the Western Tanager, 

American Goldfinch, 

and Osprey

haven’t left yet.

If we could count on everyday sunshine, I would probably be out birding every day without blogging at all. This is the Pacific Northwest, though, and you would be foolish to count on sunshine three-fourths of the year.  When there are only short breaks in the clouds, I try to take a walk, anything from a half-hour to an hour and a half.  On days when it’s impossible to get outside, I lift weights or practice Tai Chi. Exercise has replaced blogging as a required part of every day. 

Finally, let’s face it, I’ve been putting this blog out regularly (though less regularly than I used to, that’s for sure) for twenty years now and I find it difficult to maintain the enthusiasm I did at the beginning. I probably keep at it because it forces me to try to improve my photographs — and maintain my writing skills while allowing me to think that I still have a purpose in my life.