Mark's Reading Place: Chapter Five

É uma continuação do tópico Mark's Reading Place: Chapter Four.

Este tópico foi continuado por Mark's Reading Place: Chapter Six.

Discussão75 Books Challenge for 2023

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Mark's Reading Place: Chapter Five

Editado: Abr 11, 6:51 pm

-Rhinelander, Wisconsin.

-Long-eared Owl. Rehab.

“We need the tonic of wildness... At the same time that we are earnest to explore and learn all things, we require that all things be mysterious and unexplorable, that land and sea be indefinitely wild, unsurveyed and unfathomed by us because unfathomable. We can never have enough of nature.”

~ Henry David Thoreau

"The play of shine and shade on the trees as the supple boughs wag,
The delight alone or in the rush of the streets, or along the fields and hillsides,
The feeling of health . . . . the full-noon trill . . . . the song of me rising from bed
and meeting the sun..."

-Leaves of Grass- Whitman

Editado: Mar 20, 8:46 am

Jackson loves his new excavator that we got him. Blippi would be proud. ❤️❤️

Editado: Abr 11, 6:54 pm




12- My Heart Is a Chainsaw by Stephen Graham Jones 3.2 stars
13- I Hear the Sirens in the Street: Sean Duffy Novel by Adrian McKinty 4.2 stars (audio)
14- Horse by Geraldine Brooks 4.8 stars Group Read
15- Sporadic Troubleshooting: Poems by Clarence Major 4.7 stars P
16- Baby Shark (Book #1) by Robert Fate 4 stars
17- M is For Monster by Talia Dutton 3.6 stars GN
18- Trees by Percival Everett 4.2 stars
19- On the Bus with Rosa Parks: Poems by Rita Dove 4.4 stars P
20- Waco: David Koresh by Jeff Guinn 3.7 stars (audio)
21- The Red Widow by Sarah Horowitz 3.6 stars
22- Foster by Claire Keegan 4.2 stars
23- American Cult: A Graphic History of Religious Cults in America by Robyn Chapman 4 stars GN
24- Down From The Mountain: Life and Death of a Grizzly Bear by Bryce Andrews 4 stars (audio)
25- Moonlight Mile: A Kenzie and Gennaro Novel by Dennis Lehane 4.2 stars


26- Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy 5 stars w/Joe
27- Public Domain by Chip Zdarsky 4 stars GN
28- Wild at Heart: The Story of Sailor and Lula by Barry Gifford 4 stars
29- Night of the Living Rez by Morgan Talty 3.8 stars
30- Clumsy by Jeffrey Brown 3.7 stars GN
31- Life on the Mississippi by Rinker Buck 4 stars (audio)
32- After The Wind: Tragedy on Everest by Lou Kasischke 4.5 stars
33- Scurry by Mac Smith 4 stars GN
34- Runaway by Alice Munro 3.8 stars
35- The Best of Robert Service by Robert Service 4 stars P
36- Woman of Light by Kali Fajardo-Anstine 4.3 stars
37- The Customer is Always Wrong by Mimi Pond 4 stars GN
38- Lost Places: Stories by Sarah Pinsker 3.7 stars


39- Talking to the Dead by Helen Dunmore 4 stars

Graphic Novel: GN
Poetry: P

Editado: Abr 14, 7:21 am

^ I was able to do some shared reading, this past year, with a few of my book buddies and I really enjoyed it. I would like this to continue through 2023. Primarily, I would like to read books off shelf, but I am still catching up with a few titles that I missed in the past year. I also would like to do a few rereads. I will list some titles and if you are interested, we will set a firm date.

Empire of Pain w/Kim March
The Winners early April w/Stasia, Kim
Three Musketeers May w/Paul, Jim
Eventide by Kent Haruf Stasia, Benita, Karen O May?
The Line of Beauty by Alan Hollinghurst w/ Jeff, Benita, MDoris June
East of Eden w/MDoris, Linda P, Lynda, Meg, Paul, Anita- July
The Singapore Grip w/Benita September

For the AAC:

April- Poetry
May: John Edgar Wideman- All Stories Are True
August: Percival Everett

Editado: Abr 11, 6:56 pm


Remember the sky that you were born under,
know each of the star’s stories.
Remember the moon, know who she is.
Remember the sun’s birth at dawn, that is the
strongest point of time. Remember sundown
and the giving away to night.
Remember your birth, how your mother struggled
to give you form and breath. You are evidence of
her life, and her mother’s, and hers.
Remember your father. He is your life, also.
Remember the earth whose skin you are:
red earth, black earth, yellow earth, white earth
brown earth, we are earth.
Remember the plants, trees, animal life who all have their
tribes, their families, their histories, too. Talk to them,
listen to them. They are alive poems.
Remember the wind. Remember her voice. She knows the
origin of this universe.
Remember you are all people and all people
are you.
Remember you are this universe and this
universe is you.
Remember all is in motion, is growing, is you.
Remember language comes from this.
Remember the dance language is, that life is.

-Joy Harjo

^This is from an earlier collection by Harjo- She Had Some Horses. I prefer her later work but this one is definitely a gem.

Editado: Maio 12, 8:26 am

Hello?? Great Horned Owl chicks.

Mar 20, 8:51 am

Happy new one!

Editado: Mar 20, 8:52 am

Happy first day of Spring! You sure couldn't tell that yesterday morning, when it was 17F, when I went on my guided bird walk. Brrrrr....Back to seasonal temps today, inching back up to 50F.

>7 figsfromthistle: Thanks, Figs! Yah, for being #1!!

Editado: Mar 20, 9:29 am

^Happy Birthday to Matt. He is 31 today. When this photo was taken he was working for a previous glass/shower installation company. Many of those jobs were in the city. That is the Chicago lakefront and Navy Pier in the background. Of course, this gave us a heart-attack when he first shared it with us. Fortunately, we recovered.

Mar 20, 9:28 am

Happy new thread, Mark!

Mar 20, 9:30 am

>10 katiekrug: Thanks, Katie. Happy Spring!

Mar 20, 10:12 am

Happy new one, Mark. Great photos, except for that first one in >9 msf59:. Gives me vertigo just peeking at it!

Mar 20, 11:18 am

>8 msf59: Happy Monday Mark - just read that the first Whooping Crane made it up to Dane County -
that's gotta be a sign of Spring despite the still freezing nights!

Sure hope Matt is now working on a lower level - all skyscrapers are scary -
Frank Lloyd Wright is my architect hero.

Mar 20, 11:21 am

Yeeehaaa. That photo (>9 msf59:) gives me the willies. I think you've posted it before.

I'm working through Demon Copperhead. Slowly. Concentration is needed, and I've got the dithers.

Mar 20, 11:37 am

Happy spring Mark and happy new thread
>9 msf59: Matt and Jackson look like 2 peas in a pod in that photo. Major family resemblance.

Mar 20, 2:25 pm

>12 jessibud2: Thanks, Shelley. No worries, that photo gives me vertigo too.

>13 m.belljackson: Happy Spring, Marianne. Hooray for a whooping crane sighting. I have not seen one in years. Is that your county? Yes, Matt mostly works local residential now. I am glad he is off the high-rises.

>14 weird_O: Howdy, Bill. I am pretty sure I posted that photo of Matt back when he shared it with me. It had to be a few years ago. Oh, I am so glad you taking on Demon Copperhead. Such a good novel. Keep at it, my friend.

>15 mdoris: Thanks, Mary and Happy Spring to you too. Yes, many others have mentioned a resemblance between Matt and Jack. They both have or had reddish tints to their hair too. I wish Matt would spend more time with his nephew. He is missing out.

Editado: Mar 20, 2:29 pm


a black bear
has just risen from sleep
and is staring

down the mountain.
All night
in the brisk and shallow restlessness
of early spring

I think of her,
her four black fists
flicking the gravel,
her tongue

like a red fire
touching the grass,
the cold water.
There is only one question:

how to love this world.
I think of her
like a black and leafy ledge

to sharpen her claws against
the silence
of the trees.
Whatever else

my life is
with its poems
and its music
and its glass cities,

it is also this dazzling darkness
down the mountain,
breathing and tasting;

all day I think of her -—
her white teeth,
her wordlessness,
her perfect love.

-Mary Oliver

Mar 20, 3:41 pm

Happy new thread!

Mar 20, 4:47 pm

Happy new thread, Mark!
And happy birthday to Matt.
And happy first day of spring (the weather here isn't spring-like).

Love the long eared owl at the top, and of course the Jackson pictures :-)

Mar 20, 5:14 pm

Happy new one, buddy. Love all the Jackson and Matt photos.

Mar 20, 5:59 pm

>18 banjo123: Thanks, Rhonda. Happy Spring!

>19 FAMeulstee: Thanks, Anita. Hope you get some better weather and glad you like the photos.

>20 PaulCranswick: Thanks, Paul. Photos of Matt are much harder to come by than the Jackson ones. LOL.

Editado: Mar 20, 6:00 pm

-Pat Byrnes

Mar 20, 8:01 pm

Happy new thread Mark!

>2 msf59: Too cool! >9 msf59: but still all kid! Congratulations to Matt on his birthday!

Mar 21, 12:49 am

Happy new thread, Mark.

>17 msf59: Nice poem only I'm not sure how accurate it is about black bears here anymore. They tend to not hibernate and wake in the spring anymore as, due to humans, there are food sources available all year round.

Mar 21, 7:15 am

>23 quondame: Thanks, Susan. Yep, in a way Matt is still a kid. Grins...

>24 Familyhistorian: Thanks, Meg. Good point about black bears in the poem. I am not sure when this poem was written but I am sure it was many years ago. Things are changing...

Mar 21, 1:49 pm

Happy new thread, Mark! Love the Jackson photo, and the ones of Matt!!

Mar 21, 1:57 pm

>26 scaifea: Thanks, Amber! Glad you like the pics. Happy Spring!

Mar 21, 3:10 pm

Happy new one, Mark! That topper is perfect for your thread! And look how big Jackson is getting - amazing. Belated birthday wishes to Matt - Rae also turned 31 this month.

Mar 21, 4:22 pm

>28 Crazymamie: Thank you, Mamie. Glad you like the topper. Yep, my little boy is growing up. I appreciate the birthday wishes for Matt and Happy Birthday to Rae!

Editado: Mar 21, 4:26 pm

Este utilizador foi removido como sendo spam.

Editado: Mar 22, 7:39 am

"There is one every generation--a seer who keeps the stories."

"A dazzling epic of betrayal, love, and fate that spans five generations of an Indigenous Chicano family in the American West...Written in Kali Fajardo-Anstine's singular voice, the wildly entertaining and complex lives of the Lopez family fill the pages of this multigenerational western saga."

I loved this author's debut story collection Sabrina & Corina, so of course I was interested in reading her debut novel, Woman of Light. I know Joe is a big fan of this novel and I have had it on the TBR for months. It is time...I start it today.

I am also still quite in engrossed with my audio of Empire of Pain. He sure keeps your attention.

Mar 22, 8:34 am

Happy new thread, Mark, and belated happy birthday to Matt.

Looks like you're in the midst of some excellent reading. I'll look forward to your thoughts on Woman of Light. It's on my TBR as well.

Mar 22, 8:43 am

>32 bell7: Happy Wednesday, Mary and thank you. Glad to hear that Woman of Light is on your TBR. Can't wait to dig in this PM.

Mar 22, 11:06 am

Happy new thread, Mark!

Mar 22, 1:34 pm

Happy New Thread, Mark. I love those photos of Jackson. He is growing so fast!!

Sabrina & Corina was a 4-star read for me in 2020 so I'm adding Woman of Light to the wish list.

>22 msf59: Funny and scary at the same time.

Mar 22, 1:39 pm

>34 drneutron: Thanks, Jim.

>35 EBT1002: Thanks, Ellen. Good to see you posting. Hooray for Jackson. Glad to hear from another fan of Sabrina & Corina. I can't wait to dig into that novel this afternoon.

Editado: Mar 22, 1:40 pm

-Harry Bliss

Mar 22, 2:51 pm

>31 msf59: I read and liked Woman of Light last year, Mark. I'm eager to hear your thoughts on it.

It was good to see the pics of your Birthday Boy, Matt. That first one was so beautiful and surreal, but I'm glad it's him sitting there and not me! I also see the family resemblance with Jack. Two Cuties for sure.

Mar 22, 5:15 pm

I read Winners a few weeks ago (actually, I listened to it and it was an excellent recording) so I will be peeking in to see what you have to say about the book when you get to it. I will remember to pick up Eventide by Kent Haruf when I am back in Alabama and bring it to Kansas with me. It looks like I may be here for a longer period of time than I anticipated. I have been wanting to read all of the Haruf books that I own this year, so I need to get started on that little project. But, dogonit, other books keep getting in the way.

You will have to add Lady in Gold to your TBR list. I listened to it on the drive up here to Kansas and the recorded version was excellent. That will be one that you can enjoy listening to as you do some of your RV driving this spring and summer. Do you have your first trip planned?

I am headed to Lincoln, NE this weekend to the Sheldon Art Gallery. I didn't know about this museum until recently. There is a half-hour program on the Lincoln TV station at 9 AM every morning that features people and places in Nebraska that are of interest and last week they featured this museum. The building was designed by Philip Johnson and that puts it on my list of local things to see. Then I learned that it has a highly rated outdoor sculpture park. Time to go see the thing. And get groceries at Super Saver. I like that grocery store chain.

The books are treating me good. I finished reading Memphis by Tara M. Stringfellow. This was for an upcoming book club meeting in June. It is the authors first book and it is pretty good. I think it tries to do too much and so the focus gets a bit muddled, but it kept my interest. I am now reading Empires of Light by Jill Jonnes. This is not narrative nonfiction but more of a traditional work of nonfiction. It is good, and the hardcopy has lots of drawings that help to explain the concepts, so even though it is not easy reading, it is interesting.

Lady in Gold got me interested in Klimt and I discovered that I had a work of historical fiction in my collection so I also brought Painted Kiss by Elizabeth Hickey with me. I wanted to learn more about Klimt and the Belle Epoch Vienna era. This is fiction, but so far it is very atmospheric and well written. I am only 50 pages in, but will let you know how I like it when I have finished.

Mar 22, 5:38 pm

There was a film Woman in Gold about this painting.(Helen Mirren, Ryan Reynolds). As I recall, it was excellent!

Mar 22, 5:55 pm

Hi Mark, I am having a fairly good day today and taking advantage of it by trying to catch up with the threads! We are having beautiful spring weather here, sunny and warm(ish). I was able to sit outside in the sunshine for a bit this morning, and although I am in no rush for the hot summer weather, I am hoping for a month or two of warm spring-like weather.

Mar 22, 6:03 pm

>38 Donna828: Happy Wednesday, Donna. I am loving Woman of Light. I love her easy narrative style. This young author is worth keeping an eye on. Glad you like the photos of birthday boy, Matt. 😁

>39 benitastrnad: Hi, Benita. It sounds like you enjoyed The Winners. I had some mixed feelings about the last one, so I was hoping this one would end the series on a strong note. It is very long, right- 650 pages? Yikes.

I have added Lady in Gold to my audio list. Yes, we have several RV trips planned for the year, plus we are going to New Orleans next week and to Texas next month.

>40 mdoris: I will have to read the book and then see the film, Mary.

Editado: Mar 22, 6:14 pm

>42 msf59:
I had planned a March trip to NOLA myself. For March. Plans changed. I have been to NOLA several times, but have never eaten at Commander's Palace or Brennan's. I wanted to rectify that before I left the area. My former supervisor and I had planned a four day eating extravaganza in which we were going to eat at Commander's Palace, Brennan's, Antoine's, and Ralph's On the Park - one each day. However, that trip will be taken later in April, but I want to go before it gets to be too hot.

I am also planning a week long trip to some Presidential libraries. I want to go to College Station to the Texas A&M campus the George H. W. Bush library, to Austin to the LBJ Library and then to the LBJ Ranch. From there to Little Rock to the Clinton Library. In October, a colleague and I are planning a trip to New York to go to TR's house and estate on Long Island, and to Hyde Park to FDR's house and library.

Mar 22, 6:34 pm

Hi, Mark, I'm returning your visit and dropping a star. I love the picture in your topper! Looks beautiful and peaceful.

>39 benitastrnad: I saw Benita's review of Lady in Gold over on her thread and added it to my TBR list. I've also got the movie on my list of movies to watch.

Mar 22, 6:44 pm

>41 DeltaQueen50: Hi, Judy. Glad you are having a good day. We are waiting for a warm stretch of spring weather. Hoping it arrives soon. I am not a fan of intense heat either.

>43 benitastrnad: We are going to NO with my cousin who is a chef. We have reservations at one of the famous NO restaurants, but I forgot the name. LOL. Your presidential library tour sounds wonderful. I have never been to one. Maybe, when Obama's is ever completed.

>44 atozgrl: Hi, Irene. Great to see you. Get ready to be bombarded with books, birds and babies. That is how I roll. 😁

Mar 22, 10:57 pm

>45 msf59: That sounds good to me! :-)

Mar 23, 3:21 am

>1 msf59: So that red thing in the right hand side of the picture is a fake bird to attract others to come? Cool!

Good to see your thread is still full of books, birds and babies!!! Mine is a ghost town there days lol- yet I am still reading (at present, my audio is Chances Are by Richard Russo- my first of his, and my print book is a Kate Bush bio).

Mar 23, 7:26 am

>47 LovingLit: Hi, Megan. Great to see you. I do not know what that plastic red thing was in the photo but I did hang a tray bird feeder in that same spot. The friends that own the house, bought their own bird feeder after we left. I am infectious, I guess. 😁🐦

I am a big fan of Russo but I have not read Chances Are.

Editado: Mar 23, 7:28 am

Happy New thread. Mark! Here's to being infectious!!

Mar 23, 7:38 am

>49 Carmenere: Thanks, Lynda. I will try to keep spreading whatever I have been spreading, since no one minds. LOL.

I just visited your thread...

Editado: Mar 23, 8:32 am

After The Wind: Tragedy on Everest by Lou Kasischke 4.5 stars

Alphakit Mar: A

“...climbing Everest does not measure your greatness as a climber. To climb it is mostly about the willingness to take the high risks and human struggle to physically endure the extreme altitude that almost reaches outer space. Some of the world’s best climbers have not and cannot climb Everest.”

“Why would anyone ever want to climb Mt. Everest?”

Into Thin Air remains one of my very favorite nonfiction books. It details the tragic events on May 10th 1996, where eight people died, trying to summit the world’s highest mountain. The author Jon Krakauer was on that climb, writing about it for Outside magazine. Lou Kasischke was also part of the same expedition. This is his story and it is a good one. It is a harrowing account, giving a different perspective than Krakauer's. He even criticizes the decision to let Krakauer come along on the trip, thinking it could influence the climbing objectives, which it just might have done. This can be a tough read but if you are into intense, well-detailed adventure stories, give this one a try.

Mar 23, 9:01 am

^I started watching The Old Man on Hulu. It has been very good. Of course, Jeff Bridges is terrific and so is John Lithgow, who looks great for 77 years old. I also love the rottweilers, but these 2 have tails. I didn't realize this was based on the novel by Thomas Perry. I read and enjoyed this author many years ago.

My wife and I are watching "Why Women Kill" on Paramount. It is a fun comedy/drama, similar to the TV show "Desperate Housewives", but dealing with 3 different timelines. Good cast too.

Lastly, I have decided to revisit Better Call Saul. I stopped watching after season 2, for whatever reason. I am now powering through the 3rd season. It was a good decision.

Mar 23, 9:28 am

>51 msf59: - I'll keep my eye out for this one. Like you, I'm a big fan of Into Thin Air, which I devoured in a single gulp on a trans-Atlantic flight.

Editado: Mar 23, 12:47 pm

I brought three series to Kansas with the intention to hook up the DVD player and watch the series. However, when I got the TV cabinet moved and crawled behind it I found that all the electrical outlets (2- two!) are full and there is no power strip in the house. I will be going to Lincoln, NE tomorrow and a power strip is on the list of things to get. I haven't gotten as much reading done as I thought I would. Cold weather and reading go together like bread and butter, but even that will pick up this weekend (I hope) with warmer temperatures on the way. I have been watching lots of the Turner Classic Movies channel, and yesterday I got to watch the last part of "Shoes of the Fisherman" and all of "Boystown" - the one with Mickey Rooney and Spencer Tracy in it. I also got to see most of "Vertigo." I can't believe that Hitchcock did that back in the 1950's. That is a very advanced film for that time. I am still wondering what the truth of that was?

Mar 23, 4:00 pm

>53 katiekrug: Hi, Katie. If you loved Into Thin Air, you should also enjoy this one.

>54 benitastrnad: Sweet Thursday, Benita. Thanks for the movie update. TCM is great, although more repetitive than I would like. Yes, Vertigo was way ahead of it's time. One of the great films and my favorite Hitchcock.

Mar 23, 6:38 pm

Preparing for Residential Placement for My Disabled Daughter

My life without you—I have already
seen it. Today, on the salt marsh.
The red-winged blackbird perched
in the tallest tree, sage green branches
falling over the water. She sat there
for a long time, doing nothing.
As she lifted up to fly, the slender branch
shook from the release of her weight.
When the bird departed, it seemed
the branch would shake forever
in the wind, bobbing up and down.
When it finally stopped moving,
the branch was diminished,
reaching out to the vast sky.

-Jennifer Franklin From Poem-A-Day

"I wrote this short poem during a twelve-day residency in Cape Cod. Because I raised my twenty-two-year-old disabled daughter by myself, this was the first time since graduate school that I had uninterrupted time to write. I woke up at dawn and sat on the deck with my dog and a cup of coffee, watching the abundance of birds—swans, osprey, ducks on the salt marsh. The simple red-winged blackbird provoked this poem."

Mar 23, 8:30 pm

>31 msf59: I hope you like that one. It was a great read for me last year.

Mar 24, 5:04 am

>2 msf59: He is such a happy little guy Mark.

>9 msf59: What a great photo, but yes a bit scary.

Mar 24, 7:31 am

>57 figsfromthistle: I am really enjoying Woman of Light, Anita. Have you read her story collection?

>58 Caroline_McElwee: Happy Friday, Caroline. Glad you like the photos of my boys.

Editado: Mar 24, 7:38 am

^I have not had many opportunities to take photos this year but I am glad I took out my camera the other day and got some decent shots. If it wasn't so overcast and drab out, it might have improved the quality. The top 2 photos are of a male & female horned grebe. These are small diving waterbirds, migrating through. I love their red eyes. The bottom photo is of a tufted titmouse. I love these little cuties. I also saw 3 bald eagles and a red-headed woodpecker that day. No chance of a photo on them.

Mar 24, 8:21 am

>59 msf59: No I have not read her story collection. Some day perhaps.

Mar 24, 8:39 am

>61 figsfromthistle: It was an excellent debut, Anita. An author to watch.

Editado: Mar 24, 8:55 am

>52 msf59: Thanks for the heads up on the shows you mentioned, I will check them out. I just finished Emily in Paris, The Empress and now I’m working my way through Abbott Elementary. Love it!
Have a great Fridayday!

Just heard a flock of Canadian geese fly over my house. I think that’s a good thing.

Mar 24, 9:27 am

>63 Carmenere: Happy Friday, Lynda. Yep, so many good shows to pick from. Someone else also recommended Abbott Elementary. I will have to check it out.

Yes- lots of birds on the move.

Mar 24, 11:05 am

Friday orisons, Birddude. I write from underneath sleeting clouds and freezy-frosty-cold winds from the North Atlantic. Spring's still got her teeth bared at us!

The Red Widow and I are keeping company quite amicably. Thank you again.

Mar 24, 11:09 am

>65 richardderus: Happy Friday, RD. Sorry to hear about your crummy weather. Just overcast and chilly here. Off to see Jackson. That will bring some sunshine.

Glad you got the book. Enjoy.

Mar 24, 12:49 pm

Somewhere along the trip to Kansas I picked up a cold. The headache, runny nose kind. That meant that for most of yesterday I didn't read a thing. I hope to make up for that today.

I would encourage you to pick up Memphis by Tara M. Stringfellow. It is the author's first book, so it has some flaws, but it is a darn good read. There are so many interesting characters and it does make you think that a visit to Memphis would be a good idea. The book deals with many issues in the Black community - lynching, assassination, domestic violence, etc., etc., but it does it in the context of middle class families. It is worth the time to read it.

I have Woman of Light on my TBR list and hope to get to it. There is lots of great Latinex literature out there at this time, and the situation can only get better. We readers, will only be the better for it as there will be lots of stories with a different slant on them in the future for us to read.

Mar 24, 1:23 pm

>60 msf59: I love the bird pics! I'm glad I stopped by!

Mar 24, 4:34 pm

>67 benitastrnad: Happy Friday, Benita. Sorry you caught a cold. Hoping it is short-lived. I will add Memphis to my TBR. You rarely steer me wrong. I highly recommend reading Woman of Light. For a multi-generational novel, it is a quick, engaging read. She is a talented writer.

>68 atozgrl: Glad you like the bird pics, Irene. I am hoping to share more of them in the coming weeks/months. Do you have tufted titmouse by you? I think Karen sees them.

Editado: Mar 24, 4:58 pm

"Give me a cabin in the woods
Where not a human soul intrudes;
Where I can sit beside a stream
Beneath a balsam bough and deam,
And every morning see arise
The sun like bird of paradise;
Then go down to the creek and fish
A speckled trout for breakfast dish,
And fry it in an ember fire -
Ah! there's the life of my desire..."

From Sentimental Shark

"...Beyond the Arctic outposts I will venture all alone;
Some Never-never Land will be my goal.
Thank God! there's none will miss me, for I've been a bird of flight;
And in my moccasins I'll take my call;
For the Wanderlust has ruled me,
And the Wanderlust has schooled me,
And I'm ready for the darkest trail of all.

Grim land, dim land, oh, how the vastness calls!
Far land, star land, oh, how the stillness falls!
For you never can tell if it's heaven or hell,
And I'm taking the trail on trust;
But I haven't a doubt
That my soul will leap out
On its Wan-der-lust."

From The Wanderlust

^These excerpts are from a volume of poetry/verse- The Best of Robert Service. This one was recommended by Joe and I am glad I took the journey. Like most extensive collections, not everything worked for me but plenty did. I was reading some of his bio info and he was a man who lived quite an adventurous life. He was called the "the Canadian Kipling”. Like Hemingway, he was an ambulance driver during WWI. He was a cowboy, newspaperman, frontiersman and miner. Fans of Jack London would also appreciate his writing. (1874-1958)

Mar 24, 5:28 pm

>70 msf59: Nice to see you discovering a member of the Canadian canon, Mark. I'm not a big poetry person but I do have soft spot for "The Cremation of Sam McGee."

Mar 24, 5:42 pm

>69 msf59: Yes, indeed we do. We've seen titmouse (titmice? I've never been sure what the correct plural is) since we moved in 20+ years ago. They still visit the feeder whenever the mockingbird has a break in attacks. They've been fairly consistent visitors this winter, whenever it has been relatively peaceful.

A few years back we happened to see a Cooper's Hawk sitting in one of the trees in our backyard, dining on some poor bird. I later found grey feathers beneath the tree, so I fear it had gotten one of the titmice. It breaks my heart.

On the other hand, I'm so fed up with the mockingbird after three years that I wish the Cooper's Hawk would come back and catch that bird!

Mar 24, 6:06 pm

>60 msf59: Lovely. The titmouse looks like he spilt his popcorn coming out of the cinema Mark.

>70 msf59: I thought I had a volume of Services work, but LT it says no.

Mar 24, 7:44 pm

>37 msf59: Ha! Especially so when you’ve walked home with a dog who’s reeking and sticky from whatever dead thing they found and gleefully rolled in. Hose bath and lots of shampoo to the rescue!

>60 msf59: We have Clark’s and Western Grebes here and they are so cute! I love when we get close to them on the lake and the entire flock dives into the water. So very graceful.

Mar 24, 10:40 pm

Just checking in to see if you've started Woman of Light.

I love titmice! We don't get them here but I've often seen them in North Carolina and other locales. So cute.

Mar 25, 7:33 am

>71 MickyFine: Hi, Micky. Good to see you. Joe recommended Robert Service. I had not heard of him. At first, while I was reading it, I thought he was American. I later discovered he was English/Canadian, which made sense since many of the poems were based in the Yukon. "The Cremation of Sam McGee" is a classic.

>72 atozgrl: Hi, Irene. I know Karen has reported titmouse at her feeders, so I figured you saw them too. Bummer, about that wicked little mockingbird. Maybe the Cooper's Hawk will take care of that problem for you. They feast on birds.

>73 Caroline_McElwee: LOL. At this particular spot, in the forest preserve, someone dumps seed and cracked corn. This is illegal for some reason but many birders like to stop there and get good looks and photos of feeding birds.

Happy Saturday, Caroline.

Mar 25, 7:39 am

>74 Copperskye: Happy Saturday, Joanne. We keep Juno firmly on the leash, so she doesn't have the opportunity to roll in any objectionable matter. Ooh, I am jealous you get to see Clarks & Western grebes. Of course, both of those are on my wishlist. We also get pie-billed grebes and on the rare occasion an eared-grebe, during migration.

>75 EBT1002: Happy Saturday, Ellen. For some reason, the titmice avoid most of the city and urban areas but if you venture out a bit to the preserves, you can spot one. I have only had them visit my feeders twice in 7 years.

I am into the second half of Woman of Light and loving it. She is such a good, young writer.

Mar 25, 8:30 am

^Jackson falling asleep in my lap. It has happened many times and it never ever gets old. ❤️

Mar 25, 8:45 am

>78 msf59: Love it!

Happy weekend, Mark.

Mar 25, 8:55 am

>79 bell7: Thanks, Mary. Have a wonderful birthday weekend.

Mar 25, 8:55 am

^I have got to get this sign! 😁🐝

Mar 25, 9:31 am

>81 msf59: An excellent sign indeed. I wish more people would do this. The planet needs all the help we can give it.

Mar 25, 9:54 am

>81 msf59: - Thanks for that! I just forwarded it to a friend who actually has bee hives!

Mar 25, 10:11 am

>82 richardderus: >83 jessibud2: I have a continuing battle with dandelions, probably due to my reluctance to use a lot of weed-control chemicals. Glad to know this benefits bees and birds, without poisoning the earth. My neighbors can sneer all they want. 😁🐝

Mar 25, 10:43 am

>84 msf59: Dig 'em up when they're first popping up and eat 'em in salads! I do love bitter greens in a salad. Plus it keeps the blooming down to manageable levels.

I like the roots when they're roasted and powdered as coffee additions, too. The taste is like chicory, like New Orleans-style coffee.

Mar 25, 11:31 am

>85 richardderus: I wish you hadn't mentioned coffee with chicory. That's how I learned to drink it, (with half milk, of course) and I haven't had any in years.

Mar 25, 12:37 pm

>86 laytonwoman3rd: ...well, you have dandelions and an oven...that takes about 20min to fix...

Mar 25, 12:41 pm

>2 msf59: My grandson learned the word “excabator” from watching Blippi.

Mar 25, 1:28 pm

>87 richardderus: No dandelions visible yet in my yard...

Mar 25, 2:36 pm

Hi Mark! Jackson is so sweet!

We have been watching the mini-series "Daisy Jones and the Six" on amazon prime. It is so good. Have you tried it? Emma says that the series is better than the book.

We should try the Old Man... I had not heard of it.

Mar 25, 3:02 pm

>78 msf59: So sweet.

>81 msf59: I love it!

I'm glad Woman of Light is living up to its early promise, including her short story collection. I am in the library queue.

Mar 25, 3:08 pm

>85 richardderus: >86 laytonwoman3rd: I have never had dandelions in a salad or dandelion wine. I have never roosted the roots for coffee. Maybe, I need to get out and live a little, eh? 😁

>88 sjgoins: Looks like Blippi has been a big influence. No wonder he is now a mutli-millionaire. Good to see you.

>90 banjo123: Happy Saturday, Rhonda. I read and enjoyed Daisy Jones and the Six. I was kind of waiting to see if any LTers would chime in on the TV show. You did your job! Yah!

I am really enjoying The Old Man. It is mostly a quiet show but there are bursts of violence.

Mar 25, 3:10 pm

>91 EBT1002: Happy Saturday, Ellen. Hooray for Jackson & the bees! I will be done with Woman of Light tomorrow and I can already tell I will miss it.

Mar 25, 3:31 pm

>92 msf59: The younger, the better for salad greens. once they've flowered, the greens are edible, but more like kale in texture, ie yucky. Before they set seed is the best moment to root 'em up for roasting as coffee additives. My father's father roasted the roots, powdered them, and mixed 1 part of the powder to 5 parts sugar for his coffee. I was the weird grandkid who loved the bitter taste.

Mar 25, 3:31 pm

>89 laytonwoman3rd: No? I'm surprised.

Mar 25, 4:59 pm

>78 msf59: Aw!

The Old Man is a good one. It picks up… Looking forward to what happens in the next season!

Mar 25, 6:06 pm

>78 msf59: So sweet.

Mar 25, 6:20 pm

>81 msf59: I love that! I too wish more people would do that. For some reason, our local gas company mows their right of way every fall, late September or October, when the wild tickseed is in full bloom. They've managed to almost eliminate it. One year the entire area was full of it--a whole field of it--and the blooms glowed in the sun. Gorgeous! I was going to go take a picture, but they cut it down before I could. At that time of year, I'm sure the bees need all the help they can get, so it annoys the heck out of me that they want to cut it all down.

Mar 25, 6:25 pm

Lovely pictures of the birds, Mark! I've noticed your cute grandson Jack and he is very handsome indeed. I've recently become somewhat acquainted with Blippi via my two young grandchildren, Melissa and Miles ( 5 and 2.5 years old ) . I've started a new thread in the 75's so do come by and visit when you get a chance.

>78 msf59: Aww, grandpa and Jackson!

Mar 25, 7:55 pm

>78 msf59: Wonderful, isn’t it? 😀

Mar 26, 7:27 am

>94 richardderus: Wow! Thanks for the detailed instructions, RD. I am sure your grandad adored his weird grandson.

>96 Copperskye: Hi, Joanne. Glad to hear that enjoyed The Old Man. It is great to see these older stars still rockin' it.

>97 quondame: Thanks, Susan. Good to see you.

Mar 26, 7:37 am

>98 atozgrl: Bummer about your gas company. I am surprised that they haven't been petitioned by an environmental group. At least mow after the tickseed finishes flowering. Hope something changes. The bees need it. 🤞

>99 vancouverdeb: Well, hello, Deb! Sure good to see you, my friend. I know we cross paths from time to time on FB. Glad you like the pics of birds and my best boy, Jackson. I share them a lot. LOL. Yes, Jackson has been obsessed with Blippi for months now and he is only 19 months old, although he does prefer the episodes with excavators and dinosaurs. I am sure you are also loving your grandchildren. Soak up every moment. I can't believe Melissa is 5 already.

>100 drneutron: It certainly is, Jim. 😁❤️

Mar 26, 8:29 am

Happy Sunday, Mark! I thought you'd like to know that I peeped out at my bird feeder yesterday and saw three bluebird pairs feasting away, plus a mockingbird. The mockingbird has been hanging out in the neighborhood for some time, but the bluebirds were a first of the year, and especially fun to see a group of them.

Mar 26, 9:03 am

>103 bell7: Happy Sunday, Mary. Thanks for the bird report. Where were the bluebirds hanging out? They don't come to the feeders do they? We are north of the mockingbird range. I have never seen one in Illinois. Glad to hear you get to see them.

Editado: Mar 26, 9:10 am

>104 msf59: they were perched on top of the shepherd's hook and in the trees behind it. I have suet as well as seed, so they were probably eating the former. I didn't realize you don't get mockingbirds! I had to look up their range, and it appears that they extended north but mostly up the coast, so though I'm further north than you, apparently they're more common here. Interesting.

Edited to fix the post reference number

Editado: Mar 26, 2:16 pm

>104 msf59: In my experience, the bluebirds do come to the feeders, even though the things I read say they don't. They come for the suet I suppose, and they absolutely love the nuggets I put out, but I have also definitely seen them taking seed from our shelled seed feeder when it's cold.

Unfortunately, the bluebirds and the woodpeckers are the birds the mockingbird hates most, so I haven't seen bluebirds in my back yard for a couple of months. The chickadees, cardinals, titmice and some other birds will make an appearance when the mockingbird lets up for awhile, but not the bluebirds. I guess he makes a point of chasing them off. Of course, I haven't put the nuggets back out for awhile either, since the mockingbird also loves them. Trying to give him less reason to visit.

edited to correct--the bluebirds take the shelled seed, not unshelled

Mar 26, 12:28 pm

>101 msf59: Quite the opposite; he referred to me as "Winter's little faggot", and didn't much care if I overheard him. A nasty old Bavarian-Catholic bastard with prejudices in place of thoughts. Luckily I was accustomed to not having warm, loving relatives so he was just more of the same; his wife went out of her way to spoil me as a way to make up for it.

Mar 26, 12:56 pm

>105 bell7: >106 atozgrl: Good to know that about the bluebirds, visiting the feeders. Bluebirds nest here but since we live in a more urban area, they are never seen in my yard but can be found at a number of forest preserves, preferring more open, remote spaces.

>106 atozgrl: Ooh, those dreaded mockingbirds. I had no idea.

>107 richardderus: Aw, I was afraid of that RD. You didn't catch many breaks during your childhood, did you? Glad to hear your step-grandmother was kind.

Mar 26, 2:20 pm

>108 msf59: The mockingbirds and the bluebirds seem to like the same foods, so there's a conflict. And obviously the mockingbirds are much more aggressive, so they get their way.

I noticed I had written my original post wrong, and edited it to correct it. The bluebirds seem to eat the shelled seed when it gets worst in the winter (not the unshelled).

Editado: Mar 26, 5:08 pm

>94 richardderus:
The leaves of the dandelion are also a very good natural diuretic.

>98 atozgrl:
I am not sure where you live, but the gas company may be mowing the right-of-way as a snow removal deterrent. Tall weeds block the wind and hold snow, so it can make it difficult to get in to service things when there is snow fall. I know that here in Kansas it is customary to mow roadsides in September and October before snowfall in order to prevent the roads from drifting shut in the winter. Unfortunately, this disrupts the natural maturation of many of the native plants. This has resulted in low reproduction rates for these plants and less natural habitat for many native species.

Utility companies walk a fine line between those who love native habitats and those who find them messy looking and a sign of neglect. In Alabama there are constant fights between the power companies and home owners of all types about the cutting back of trees. Trees should be more than 100 feet from power lines. If that rule were followed to the letter there wouldn't be a tree in many neighborhoods in Tuscaloosa, as those old neighborhoods all have overhead power lines. The answer to much of this is to put power lines underground, but that is expensive and would raise rates - especially in older neighborhoods that were built in construction pre-code areas.

In many ways this reminds me of the arguments I have read about in my recent spate of gardening books. These arguments were usually between the classical garden people and the romantic garden people. Classical garden people want things in neat rows with plants all in a line. They see romantic gardens as messy and uncontrolled. It is the difference between Beatrix Potter's cottage gardens and Thomas Jefferson's garden at Monticello.

Mar 26, 8:29 pm

>90 banjo123: and >92 msf59: P will be away for several days in May so I think I'll give Daisy Jones and the Six a try at that time.

Mar 27, 7:57 am

>109 atozgrl: Thanks for the bluebird/mockingbird update, Irene. Good luck.

>110 benitastrnad: Thanks for this info, Benita. Nothing is always simple, right? Trying to keep everyone happy. Not easy. How is your Mom doing?

>111 EBT1002: I may try to sample Daisy Jones before then, Ellen. Glad it is on your radar.

Editado: Mar 27, 8:06 am

^Well, it looks like we have a reader, folks. Pardon me if I get a little choked up...

Mar 27, 8:07 am

Happy Monday!

Regarding dandelions- I used to help my dad pick the dandelion heads to make wine. It always turned out to be sweeter and stronger than I thought it would. The leaves in spring would be mixed in with our salad for the body's "spring cleaning"' as my mom would put it. There is something that looks similar to the dandelion called Coltsfoot which we would pick, prepare in different ways and use to treat various ailments.

Hope you have a great start to the week.

Mar 27, 8:12 am

>113 msf59: - But, of course! Don't you just love to see this? He looks so engrossed. And that chair and footrest are priceless!

Mar 27, 8:19 am

>114 figsfromthistle: Happy Monday, Anita. Thanks for chiming in on the dandelion discussion. I will have to try dandelion wine at some point. I wonder if they make dandelion beer? Grins...

>115 jessibud2: Morning, Shelley. Sue and I were grinning from ear to ear. He looked so serious. Of course, this only lasted a few minutes but we will take it. I think Sue picked up that chair before Jack was born. She is partial to elephants.

Mar 27, 8:22 am

>116 msf59: I know that there is a company in my province that makes dandelion beer that is mixed with lemongrass. I have not tried it though.

Editado: Mar 27, 8:26 am

"A new collection from the author of Nebula Award winning A Song for a New Day and Philip K Dick Award winning Sooner or Later Everything Falls Into the Sea. Her stories span and transcend genre labels, looking for the truth in strange situations from possible futures to impossible pasts."

I loved Pinsker's previous collection Sooner or Later Everything Falls Into the Sea, so when this showed up on the Early Reviewer list, I immediately requested it. I think Jeff has recently read and enjoyed this collection. I will dip into it today. It will be published in May.

Mar 27, 9:15 am

'Morning, Mark, and a belated happy new thread. Hope you're doing well today.

Line in the sand, should be able to visit every day again.

A finch of some sort and a White-Breasted Nuthatch. We had a major thunderstorm 3am-ish, with a lightning strike way too close to the house - it's either that or after first bird breakfast and before second bird breakfast.

Mar 27, 11:17 am

Happy start to the week, Mark, and does it still swell your heart to realize that you don’t have to head into work?

Love seeing Jackson up there enjoying a book. Can you tell what he’s reading?

I’m very happy that you’re loving Woman of Light. A promising young author, indeed. It’s great to see her and the book getting some ink.

I’m another fan of that older Sarah Pinsker collection, and look forward to your comments on the new one.

Mar 27, 12:03 pm

>116 msf59: Then there's always Ray Bradbury's Dandelion Wine - which starts off so beautifully...

Mar 27, 12:50 pm

>113 msf59: Adorable pictures Mark! My grands love books too.

Mar 27, 1:57 pm

>119 karenmarie: Hi, Karen. Welcome back. Looking forward to you visiting regularly again. All good here and we finally have a nice day. I enjoyed hitting the trails earlier today. I appreciate the feeder report.

>120 jnwelch: Hi, Joe. I have many favorite Jackson photos but that first one may be tops. I think the first book that he is reading is "I Love My Daddy". Yep, I loved Woman of Light. I appreciate the nudge and I am looking forward to seeing what she does next. I know you're not a big short story guy but I am glad to hear that you enjoyed Pinsker's last collection.

>121 m.belljackson: Ooh, Dandelion Wine. One of my favorites by Bradbury. I have not read him in a while.

>122 mdoris: Hi, Mary. So the grands have continued to read, as they've got older? That would be a real blessing for me.

Mar 27, 3:25 pm

The most important thing is that children "SEE" people around them reading. They quickly pick up on how important it is from what they see.

Mar 27, 3:55 pm

>113 msf59: What a wonderful sight!

Happy week-ahead's reads, Birddude.

Mar 27, 4:09 pm

>113 msf59: (Not quite) Too precious for words! What great pictures and great memories!

Mar 27, 6:30 pm

>124 benitastrnad: Well I am doing my part, Benita- Jack regularly sees Grandpa with a book. Occasionally, Grandma too. 😁

>125 richardderus: It was even better "live", RD. 😁❤️Have a good week too, my friend.

>126 quondame: One of those pics will probably make next year's Jackson calendar, Susan.

Editado: Mar 28, 7:09 am

^We are going to New Orleans on Wednesday night and will stay until Monday. This is my first time visiting The Big Easy. Looking forward to it. Of course, I will try to sneak in a little birding too, in between all the drinking, eating and carousing. Does anyone have a favorite NOLA restaurant or bar? I am especially interested in good music- jazz or blues. We already have an impressive list. We have reservations for dinner at Commander's Palace for Friday evening.

-Audubon Park

Mar 27, 7:16 pm

Hi, Mark! Yay for NOLA! I was there pre-Katrina, so I'm not sure how much has changed, but I adored it when I went. I hope you do, too!

Mar 27, 9:17 pm

Assuming they are still there, I love Pesce and GW Fin's.

There also some great bookstores.... Just sayin'....

Have fun!

Mar 27, 10:12 pm

>110 benitastrnad: Thanks, Benita. That's interesting. I had never thought about weeds holding snow. However, given the climate here, that doesn't seem like a good reason for us. We just don't get much snow. From a Google search, the average annual snowfall here is "just under 6 inches." We certainly don't get any snow in the fall, so there's no reason for them not to wait until November before mowing.

>113 msf59: Wonderful pictures! I know you're proud.

Feeder report today--I saw a cardinal sitting in the feeder for extended periods today. Maybe it has warmed up enough and there are enough bugs out to cause the mockingbird to let up on its attacks. Fingers crossed.

Mar 27, 11:39 pm

>128 msf59: I feel like you can't go wrong visiting Cafe du Monde across the square from the St. Louis Cathedral. I would recommend it for a breakfast croissant and coffee. Consider visiting Preservation Hall too.

Mar 28, 7:13 am

>129 scaifea: Thanks, Amber. Good to see you. I am sure we will have a good time.

>130 katiekrug: Thanks, for the recs, Katie. I will add them to the list. I might even pop into one of those bookstores.

>131 atozgrl: Morning, Irene. Yep, we sure love our Jackson. Thanks for the feeder report. We have mostly been seeing juncos, house sparrows, housefinch, cardinals and doves. A robin or 2 will pop up too.

>132 Oberon: Hi, Erik. Good to see you. Thanks for the recs. I definitely would mind checking out Preservation Hall.

Mar 28, 8:39 am

>133 msf59: I'm trying to lurk less these days.

I'll also add to the NOLA recommendations: Tujaque's (pronounced, I think, 'two jacks') is *such* a great restaurant and I think you'd love it. Lots of history to it, too.

Mar 28, 9:22 am

Hi Mark! Happy Tuesday to you.

>123 msf59: Glad to be back, and wait. His first book is “I Love My Daddy” not “I Love My Grandpa”?

>128 msf59: Yay for New Orleans. Safe travels and wonderful trip. I was there in October 1987 and ate in two wonderful restaurants but can’t remember the names. One was a converted church or other repurposed-building and the other was close to the water in a small, narrow tin-covered-ceiling restaurant. Both with excellent local food, none of which my boss would try, then complaining about how bland chicken was. He was an orthodox Jew but his wife wasn't there and he strayed into non-kosher food at restaurants in LA where we worked, so *eye roll* Plus, of course, Café du Monde for coffee and beignets and Pat O’Brien’s in the French Quarter where I got blitzed on Hurricanes and … ah… liberated one of the glasses… and still have it somewhere here in the house. First taste of freshly made pralines, too.

Mar 28, 10:04 am

Morning, Mark! Hoping that your travels are full of fabulous - I have never been to The Big Easy.

Love the photos you have shared - especially the titmouse (one of my favorite birds - so cute and a regular at our feeders) and sleeping Jack.

Mar 28, 11:27 am

Hi Mark - a Madison Friend and Family are visiting New Orleans and will look for cans of Cafe du Monde Chickory Coffee to bring home
and to find ZYDECO Dancing, which she and my daughter teach online.

Mar 28, 11:59 am

Have a wonderful trip to the Big Easy, Mark. My recommendations would be at least 40 years out of date, so... As I recall, Pat O'Brien's and Preservation hall are nearly next door to one another. I have one of those Hurricane glasses, too...I think they expected you to "liberate" them. I'd love to know if Dooky Chase's is still wonderful, post-Katrina and after the loss of its matriarch, Leah Chase a few years back.

Mar 28, 12:29 pm

Unpopular opinion: Cafe du Monde is fine, but if you don't feel like waiting forever, there are plenty of other places to get good chickory coffee and delicious beignets...

Mar 28, 1:58 pm

>134 scaifea: I would love to see you around the threads more, Amber. Thanks for the NOLA rec.

>135 karenmarie: Happy Tuesday, Karen. Jackson hand-picked "I Love My Daddy”, so I couldn't dissuade him. I am not sure we have a “I Love My Grandpa” book. WTH?

Thanks for your NOLA recs and memories. I will have to have a hurricane in honor of you getting blitzed on them. Grins...

Editado: Mar 28, 2:06 pm

>136 Crazymamie: Hi, Mamie! Thanks for the good NOLA wishes. I am sure we will have a fine time in The Big Easy. Glad you like the bird pics. The titmouse is tough to photograph. They are always so quick. Having them feed on the ground, made it a bit easier. Jackson is much easier to photograph. 😁❤️

>137 m.belljackson: Hi, Marianne. I also like coffee and Zydeco. I hope to sample both. I don't think I will dance though.

>138 laytonwoman3rd: Thanks, Linda. I appreciate it. I won't be liberating any glasses but I plan on at least trying a hurricane or two. It looks like Dooky Chase is still in operation. Looks good.

>139 katiekrug: Good suggestion, Katie. We will see how crowded it gets.

Mar 28, 2:09 pm

-Mike Luckovich

Mar 28, 3:55 pm

Have a fabulous trip, Mark and Sue!

Mar 28, 6:26 pm

>143 vancouverdeb: Thanks, Deb. We are looking forward to it, plus we get to enjoy some real warmth.

Mar 28, 7:51 pm

Have a great trip! Can't wait for pics when you get back :)

Mar 28, 7:53 pm

Have a great trip, Mark!

Mar 28, 10:18 pm

Enjoy your trip!

Mar 29, 7:01 am

Have a great trip, Mark!

Editado: Mar 29, 7:53 am

Thanks, Anita, Rhonda, Irene and Shelley. It should be a nice getaway. We leave later today.

"Pass a good time”

Editado: Mar 29, 8:12 am

^ My patient of the day yesterday at Wildlife Rehab was this beautiful eastern screech owl. She was really checking me out with those gorgeous peepers. She sure looked healthy to me, so I am hoping for a quick recovery and release.

They also had their first Canada geese goslings arrive, a week or 2 earlier than normal. Soon we will be overrun by spring babies.

Mar 29, 8:36 am

>113 msf59: He's got the habit... great photos Mark.

Enjoy New Orleans.

Mar 29, 9:07 am

Morning, Mark! Wishing you safe travels today.

>150 msf59: He's full of gorgeous!

Mar 29, 10:08 am

‘Morning, Mark! Well, here I am, two days in a row. I’ll check in but not necessarily post while you burn up New Orleans…

>140 msf59: Okay, we’ll forgive Jackson. And, thanks for drinking a Hurricane in my honor.

Mar 29, 10:45 am

>150 msf59: What a beauty she is!

Have a safe trip, love New Orleans, get out west of Metairie to do some birding, and get home safe.

Mar 29, 1:04 pm

>151 Caroline_McElwee: Thanks, Caroline. Let's hope Jackson keeps that habit. I will do my best.

>152 Crazymamie: Happy Wednesday, Mamie and thank you.

>153 karenmarie: Happy Wednesday, Karen. Yep, we will always forgive that little boy. We'll post again early next week. Keep that recovery going.

>154 richardderus: Thanks, Richard. We do plan to get out of the city and do a swamp/bayou tour. Could be my best chance to see some birdies.

Mar 29, 1:12 pm

^Opening Day tomorrow! We will be out of town, so I don't think I will see any of this series against the Brewers. Go Cubbies! Hoping for a good year from this team.

Mar 29, 4:13 pm

>156 msf59: I sure hope so, too. I'm not liking seeing clocks around home plate but I do like the results of shorter games. I'll have to learn to avoid looking at those clocks.

For the first time in a few years, I'm feeling a bit more confident about this Cubs team this season.

Have fun in New Orleans!!

Mar 29, 4:19 pm

I know that I am late to the party but I would recommend two restaurants. Clancy's on Annunciation St. It is in an old house and mostly locals go there. I am not sure that it is open every night of the week and I would get reservations for it and it is pricey. The other restaurant is my favorite in NOLA. Ralph's on the Park. It is also out of tourist country - located on the edge of City Park, so it is hard to find. Cab drivers in NOLA will know where it is - but I am not sure that Uber drivers will. Reservations there are a must. It is owned by Ralph Brennan and is more formal than is Clancy's. It just as pricey as the downtown Brennan's restaurants. A meal there is going to set you back at least $75.00 per person and that won't include the wine, but with food like that - you won't need the wine.

Dooky Chase's is still open and still owned by the family. The current had chef is one of the newer generation of Chase's. It is a must do for anybody eating in NOLA. The restaurant is in the original building and is something historical that every person visiting NOLA should do. It is as much a haute cuisine landmark as the Brennan family restaurants.

If you are going outside of the city, you might try some of the Vietnamese fusion restaurants in Slidell. There is a huge Vietnamese population in NOLA and they are heavily influencing the food scene in the city. You might try Lilly's Cafe which is on the edge of the Garden District and the other place I have heard good things about, but never been is Ba Mein.

There are also food trucks of all ilks in NOLA. Try the food from them. I would also say go to Cafe Du Monde either early in the morning or late at night to avoid the crowds. Go there for the atmosphere and the views. The coffee is so-so, but the hot greasy beignets with the coffee are what NOLA is all about. I can probably make better beignets but I can't make that view.

Editado: Mar 29, 7:22 pm

>128 msf59: Ack, I may have missed my chance to weigh in on NOLA. No music venue to recommend but I *highly* recommend visiting Faulkner House Books in the man's former home. It's in the French Quarter on a little alley (Pirate's). I visited it twice last time I spent a few days in that city.


Mar 29, 11:24 pm

>156 msf59: Go Cubs! Keeping my fingers crossed for a good season this year.

Mar 30, 8:06 am

>160 atozgrl: Having just looked at your profile page again, and seen your Chicago Cubs and baseball tags, understand your Go Cubs!

Oh. Hi Mark! *smile*

Mar 30, 8:18 am

>150 msf59: Aw, what a cutie she is!

Safe travels and have a wonderful time!!

Mar 30, 10:24 am

>159 EBT1002: *Enthusiastic applause* Although I loved Pirate's Alley and its funky shops back in the day, I did not have the pleasure of visiting that venue, as it did not open until long after I moved back to Pennsylvania. I hope you'll go, Mark, and share the experience.

Mar 31, 10:41 am

Yeah for NOLA! We stayed at a timeshare in the French Quarter and we were very very tempted to buy into it but ultimately I did not.
Yes, to Faulkner house. Little alley beside the cathedral.

OMG Shrimp and Grits! Who would have thought it would be so delicious!
Char-Grilled oysters is a must. Felix’s i think

Have a blast my friend.

Mar 31, 11:59 pm

Hi Mark, I see that you are off to New Orleans - lucky you! Can't wait to hear all about it when you return. I am just about to start Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher which was a book bullet that I got from you. Looking forward to it!

Abr 1, 9:22 am

Greetings from New Orleans. We are having a great time. The weather is perfect, about 80F, with very little humidity. We are staying just outside the Garden District, so we are definitely getting our steps in, as we visit the various hotspots. Of course, lots of eating and drinking and the food has been excellent. We did do the swamp tour. About a 45 min drive from here. Very cool but didn't see as many birds as I would have liked. I still snagged 2 Lifers. We did see alligators and snakes. We are visiting Audubon Park this morning.

Thanks for the visits everyone.

Abr 1, 9:23 am

Thanks for the update, Mark, and congrats on 2 Lifers. Good luck at the Audubon Park.

Abr 1, 3:35 pm

>166 msf59: I'm glad you got safely to New Orleans before all the bad weather hit the midwest. Sounds like you're having a great time! Congratulations on the 2 Lifers, and I hope you have better luck with seeing birds at Audubon Park.

Abr 2, 12:06 am

I visited your thread to see what you had to say about Empire of Pain to see if your opinion was similar to mine. Now I see that you are in New Orleans. Have a great visit. Thanks for asking for recommendations. I'm shamelessly writing them down as I will be heading to NOLA in May to check it out. It will also be my first visit there.

Abr 2, 8:19 am

>166 msf59: Congratulations on two lifers, Mark!
Enjoy your stay in New Orleans, and I hope your visit to Audubon Park is good.

Abr 3, 12:13 am

Two lifers, Mark! Glad you are enjoying your holiday so much!

Abr 3, 11:40 am

Looking forward to hearing and seeing more about your NOLA getaway!

Abr 3, 1:38 pm

Two Lifers isn't to be sneezed at! Yay! And AUdubon Park is a lovely place indeed. I'm really glad you're enjoying the trip.

Editado: Abr 3, 6:52 pm

We are back! Had a wonderful time. I will share more pics over the next couple of days. I had to feature the live oaks that are everywhere in NOLA. Trees with personality, (a future topper?). President Jackson may have been a genuine POS but Jackson Square is a lovely tribute to him, with St. Louis Cathedral overlooking the proceedings. The bottom photo was taken along the Riverwalk, with the Mighty Miss behind us, along with the classic steamboat, Natchez.

Editado: Abr 3, 7:15 pm

>157 lindapanzo: Hi, Linda. We had a good time in NOLA. Have you been? I see the Cubs lost the series against the Brewers. How did they look?

>158 benitastrnad: Hi, Benita. Thanks for the NOLA recs. We intended to do Dooky Chase but never came across it. I also wanted to visit City Park but it was a bit far out and we never made it there. We did not see many food trucks at all.

>159 EBT1002: >163 laytonwoman3rd: Hi, Ellen and Linda. We did make it to Faulkner House Books and picked up Jackson a book too. B.A.G.

>160 atozgrl: Hi, Irene. I see that the Cubs lost the series to the Brewers. Maybe they can beat up on the Reds.

>161 karenmarie: >167 karenmarie: Hi, Karen. Thanks for keeping my thread warm.

>162 scaifea: Thanks, Amber.

>164 Carmenere: We had a good time, Lynda. Thanks and we visited Faulkner House Books too. I did not try the shrimp and grits but did enjoy the Char-Grilled oysters.

>165 DeltaQueen50: Hi, Judy. We had a good time in NOLA. I hope you are enjoying Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher. I loved that one. Another Egan gem.

Abr 3, 7:13 pm

Welcome home, Mark. The pics you posted are great. Looking forward to more. Any new lifers?

Abr 3, 9:53 pm

Welcome home! I love the pictures, especially the beautiful old oak trees!

I only got to see the Cubs game on Saturday. They looked pretty good the first couple of games. I didn't see any of yesterday's game, but the score didn't look too good. And unfortunately, I see that today's game just ended and it didn't turn out well either. Maybe it's the usual early season bullpen issues. Hopefully they'll get 'em the next two games!

Editado: Abr 3, 11:34 pm

>175 msf59:
Dooky Chase's is located in the seventh ward. Not in the usual tourist area but north of there. It is famous in NOLA so cab driver's will know where it is, but it doesn't show up on most tourist maps due to its location. It is most definitely in the Black section of town, but that is its heritage. For anybody who does any Creole cooking Leah Chase is a goddess. You are correct that City Park is a long way from downtown. It is about a $20.00 uber ride from downtown, but it is on Canal Street, so it isn't hard to get to Ralph's on the Park, but it is costly. The Brennan restaurants in downtown are much closer and are great food, so you didn't miss anything by not going to Ralph's - except great food and atmosphere and a great view of the historic Oak Grove at the City Park. :-)

Editado: Abr 3, 11:38 pm

>174 msf59: Looks like you had a great trip, Mark--great pics!--those trees are gorgeous, along with the lovely traveling couple😊 Glad you got a little relief from the rain and cold.

Abr 4, 7:32 am

>176 jessibud2: Thanks, Shelley. I ended up seeing only one more Lifer- a fish crow. I was hoping for 1 or 2 more. They have many of our same birds, including migrants that are slowly making their way up here.

>177 atozgrl: Thanks, Irene. I love those LA trees. I haven't watched any of the Cubs games yet. I am hoping for a quick rebound.

>178 benitastrnad: Thanks for the additional info, Benita. If we ever get back there, we will check out more places. I would really like to visit the WWII Museum. It looks and sounds amazing.

>179 kac522: Thanks, Kathy. Glad you like the pics. We had a good time. It looks like we came back to some warmer weather too, which is definitely a bonus. Go Cubbies!

Abr 4, 7:38 am

'Morning, Mark, and happy Tuesday to you.

>174 msf59: Love the pics. Another Lifer is good. I'm glad your visit was good. Did you have a Hurricane or two?

Abr 4, 7:43 am

>181 karenmarie: Morning, Karen. I am doing some catch-up around here and then I will start visiting some threads. Sue and I shared one Hurricane. I am not a big fan of sweet cocktails but this one was pretty good. Quite potent.

Abr 4, 7:56 am

Happy April! This is one of my favorite photos of Jack. I had another good reading month in April. I read 13 books. My favorites being Blood Meridian, (a reread with Joe) and After the Wind. My reading is going to start slowing down, as we get busier, along with camping season kicking off at the end of the month. Oh well, that's life, right?

I am still figuring out my challenges for the month but these are two:

Talking to the Dead by Helen Dunmore AlphaKit: D
The Winners by Fedrik Backman AlphaKit: W shared read with Stasia- if you want to join us

Editado: Abr 4, 8:40 am

I did locate Faulkner House Books, tucked away on Pirate's Alley near St. Louis Cathédral. Faulkner lived in two rooms at this location, in the 1920s. He started his first novel here.

We also picked up Jackson a book here- Three Little Cajun Pigs. The nemesis is an alligator instead of a wolf.

^The French Quarter- near Bourbon St.

Abr 4, 8:45 am

>174 msf59: The live oaks gave me a nostalgic twinge. We had acres of them in Austin. The Trail of Lights in Zilker Park downtown always lit the best examples for Xmas:

Such a lovely sight.

You and Sue look like you're having a great time! It's a good place to have fun, is NOLA.

Welcome back to your busy outdoor season!

Abr 4, 11:05 am

Welcome home, Mark! I love the photos you shared - especially the trees.

>183 msf59: Nothing like being able to take a bath in the kitchen sink!!

Abr 4, 12:28 pm

>174 msf59: Mark and Sue - the April-May 2023 Smithsonian Magazine has an opening feature

on Live Oak Trees in the South. Also available online.

I just finished reading Faulkner's INTRUDER IN THE DUST, printed in 1948, which
while he still defends the right of the South to end racism (if only!!!),
this book stands as his own testimonial against racism.

Abr 4, 1:49 pm

>185 richardderus: Thanks, Richard. Yep, we had a dandy time. Back to the grind... 😁 I love the Zilker Park photo.

>186 Crazymamie: Thanks, Mamie. Always nice to get back to my routine. I miss bathing Jack in the kitchen sink. 😁❤️

>187 m.belljackson: Hi, Marianne. Thanks for thinking of me again. I will have to check out the Live Oak feature. I have not read Intruder in the Dust. I really need to catch up on more Faulkner.

Abr 4, 1:56 pm

-Bill Bramhall

Abr 4, 2:11 pm

>189 msf59: - Oh, that one's brilliant.

Abr 4, 2:14 pm

>189 msf59: - Yes, it finally happened but - cynical me - don't hold your breath. Sadly, he has had a lot of experience with the law, the courts, and being crooked (and probably, hiring crooked lawyers, but I don't really know). The man will never see a day behind bars. If he has learned nothing else in his life, it's how to delay, delay, delay (appeal, appeal, appeal). All this is for him, all this means, is the 3 ring circus with him in the centre ring. Which is all he ever wants anyhow. The fact that the law would allow him to run, to win and to be president from inside a jail, is most disheartening of all and - to my mind - insane. Not to mention tiresome. I refuse to watch the news when his name is mentioned. Call me when he is wearing those orange pajamas...

Abr 4, 6:46 pm

>190 katiekrug: I agree, Katie.

>191 jessibud2: Yes, this feels like another Trump circus. I just hope one of these charges stick. There are many more coming. We were sure hoping never to see him again after he lost the 2020 election. Sighs...

Abr 4, 6:55 pm

>189 msf59: LOLOL

I Love it!

Editado: Abr 4, 6:59 pm

>193 richardderus: I just hope that escalator keeps taking him down, to his proper place. 🤞

Editado: Abr 4, 7:11 pm

^Thanks for the recommendations on visiting Cafe Du Monde. We loved the coffee and the beignets and we only waited less than 15 minutes.

Abr 4, 7:14 pm

Welcome back! Loving all the pics so far but the beignets look to die for. Yummy!

Abr 4, 7:15 pm

Dude, you’re killing me! I haven’t had Cafe Du Monde in ages. Fortunately, we have a restaurant close by that makes a decent beignet.

Editado: Abr 4, 7:18 pm

>196 figsfromthistle: Thanks, Anita. Nice to be back into my usual routine and yes the beignets were extra yummy.

>197 drneutron: Sorry for the tease, Jim. I really enjoyed the beignets but my favorite of the trip was probably the po' boys. They were awesome.

Abr 4, 7:24 pm

Mark, Thanks for all the wonderful poems! And, the owl images as well.

Abr 5, 7:32 am

>199 Whisper1: Happy Wednesday, Linda and thank you. You can expect more poems, owl pics and more Jackson as I go along.

Editado: Abr 5, 7:36 am

^At Wildlife Rehab yesterday, these were 2 highlights. ^A very slender great horned owl and this adorable Eastern Screech owlet. She couldn't have been more than 3-4 inches tall.

Abr 5, 8:12 am

Hi Mark and happy Wednesday to you!

>182 msf59: I can’t remember the last time I had a mixed drink at all, but prefer sweet ones to not sweet ones. I was telling Jenna the other day that in college I dated a guy who drank a lot. We’d meet other friends of his who drank a lot in bars, which I abhorred doing, but still went. I’d get a Whiskey Sour or other NOT sweet drink and nurse it for hours. Yes, Hurricanes are potent. So are Long Island Iced Teas. I had lots of fun with them in my early 30s in the Valley – northeast of downtown LA.

>183 msf59: Sweet boy. Congrats on your great reading month.

>184 msf59: Nice pics, thanks for sharing.

>189 msf59: Oh, I love this one! Please, please, let him go down for his crimes.

>195 msf59: Yes! Café Du Monde. Glad you liked it. I’d cheerfully kill for a beignet right now…

>201 msf59: Awww, the owls.

Abr 5, 8:23 am

>202 karenmarie: Morning, Karen. Glad you like the pics. All my feeders are completely sodden out there. I hope to freshen everything up later today.

Abr 5, 9:01 am

I always wanted a change of clothes after Café du Monde because I was bathed in beignet crumbs and powdered sugar. Not that I'd dream of missing out on them....

Abr 5, 9:14 am

>189 msf59: Snork If you know, you know.

>195 msf59: I could go for a Beignet right about now.

Have a good one!

Abr 5, 10:14 am

>204 richardderus: >205 Carmenere: Yep, we were completely dusted and if a little breeze kicked up- Watch Out!! It was lovely.

Abr 5, 12:44 pm

>195 msf59: Yum! I haven’t been to NO in 60 years, but I still remember the beignets and chickory coffee. And the oysters and the warm humid air and the sounds of jazz drifting on the night breeze. Great pics; thanks for sharing!

As for the arraignment, I just keep reminding myself that Al Capone didn’t get busted for murder, extortion, running a protection racket and a prostitution ring, or any of the other heinous crimes he committed. It was for tax evasion.

Abr 5, 1:25 pm

Glad you had a great trip.

Love your feathered friends of course Mark.

Glad Jackson got a book. Did you get some book treats too?

Abr 5, 2:32 pm

>207 Storeetllr: Hi, Mary. We had a good time in NOLA. We had oysters too. Yum! We were fortunate that it was warm but not humid. Whew!

I just hope they nail "you know who" with something tangible.

>208 Caroline_McElwee: Thanks, Caroline. We had a good time. I did not pick up any books on this trip. Just a souvenir for Jack.

Abr 5, 2:50 pm

>209 msf59: Hey Mark - three Sand Hill Cranes and more Geese flying in your direction.

Did you bring home any cans of Cafe' du Monde Chickory Coffee?

Bet Jackson will enjoy the Bourbon Street Music on your next trip -

Hope he's liking the new book - does he also have a copy of FERDINAND?

It's also available in Spanish in case you are doing a multi-lingual prep for his meet-up with Rafa and Fina.

Abr 5, 3:25 pm

Welcome back home, Mark. I'm enjoying all the NOLA pics in anticipation.

Abr 5, 3:30 pm

>192 msf59: We were sure hoping never to see him again after he lost the 2020 election. Sighs...
I only wish. After 4+ years of his insanity, I was hoping to never have to see or hear him again. I find that if he shows up on the news, I have to change the channel, because I just can't take any more of him.

>195 msf59: OMG. I've never been to NO (at least in memory--I was apparently taken there as an infant) or had a beignet. Those look to die for!

Abr 5, 6:32 pm

>210 m.belljackson: Happy Wednesday, Marianne. Shouldn't the geese and cranes fly north this time of year? Grins...
We did not buy any Cafe' du Monde Chickory Coffee but we should have. We do not own a copy of FERDINAND. It looks like we should. Wouldn't a Meet Up of Jackson and Rafe & Fina be wonderful. 😁❤️

>211 Familyhistorian: Thanks, Meg. I am sure you will have a terrific time.

>212 atozgrl: Yep, the guy that won't go away...groans and retches. If you have no plans on visiting NOLA, I hope you can track a beignet at some point.

Happy Wednesday, Irene.

Editado: Abr 5, 6:48 pm

AlphaKit: W

"Two years have passed since the events that no one wants to think about. Everyone has tried to move on, but there’s something about this place that prevents it. As the locals of Beartown struggle to overcome the past, great change is on the horizon."

The Winners is the 3rd book in the Beartown series. I loved the first in the series, Beartown and was less enthusiastic with Us Against You. I am hoping this one gets it back on track and at 650 pages, I sure hope it delivers. Whew! I managed to knock out 80 pages this afternoon. This one will take me awhile.

I am also still working on the audio of Empire of Pain.

Abr 5, 7:23 pm

So much going on since I was last by, Mark.

Glad that your trip to the Big Easy seemed to go so swimmingly - definitely on my bucket list.

I must get to those Backman books.

>113 msf59: Way back up there......I am sure that Grandpa was a proud fellow.

Abr 5, 8:28 pm

Welcome back, Mark. It looks like you and Sue had a wonderful trip and got to experience NOLA in all it's glory!

Abr 5, 8:46 pm

Hi Mark, Loved all your photos and glad you had a good time.

>201 msf59: I know screech owls are small, but I didn't know they were THAT small. Wow!

Abr 5, 11:14 pm

There is probably a whole list of children's books that Jackson, Rafa, and Fina should have. Ferdinand is only one of them. There is also the entire set of books by Beatrix Potter. These have worn well over the years. The Frog and Toad series by Mercer Meyer. The Robert Munsch books, Chris Van Allsberg when he gets a bit older, David Weisner, and everybody's current favorit Mo Willems and Jon Klassen. Klassen wrote That's Not My Hat, We Found A Hat and I Want My Hat Back and the Circle, Square, and Triangle books.

For his age I highly recommend the Mo Willems Pigeon series, the Frog and Toad books by Mercer Meyer, and the books by Jon Klassen. These are all perfect for pre-scholars.

Abr 6, 1:18 am

The Big Easy! How fun to visit New Orleans! You and Sue look great. What cute calendar picture of Jackson. Serenade and William also gift us with a calendar of Melissa and Miles each year, and yes, like you, I treasure them.Such cute owls. I do love owls. At last our Snow Geese are migrating North, to Siberia or wherever it is they head too. The snowgeese are indeed interesting and majestic, and but oh, we get a LOT of them. Unfortunately they ruin school fields and parks and paths , eating and off course , what goes in must come up. It is hazardous to walk in areas that the snow geese get into, for fear of what you may bring home on the bottom of your shoes. Ugh to that.

Abr 6, 2:15 am

Mark, I've been in New Orleans a number of times for yearbook conferences. Taking students with me was always a challenge, as I always knew there was a thin veneer of joy that covered the danger.

Abr 6, 7:24 am

>215 PaulCranswick: Hi, Paul. Good to see you. Yep, we had a fine time in NOLA. Which Backman did you read? And yes- Go Jackson!!

>216 DeltaQueen50: Thanks, Judy. It was a good trip. Planning our next one...

>217 Copperskye: Hi, Joanne. Glad you like the photos. Yep, screech owls are small but this one is just a baby so he is even smaller. So cute.

Abr 6, 7:32 am

>218 benitastrnad: Hi, Benita. Thanks for the children book recommendations. I will jot some of them down. I really like Klassen. Jack is already starting to amass a nice collection. Did you visit the WWII museum in NOLA? It looks pretty impressive.

>219 vancouverdeb: Sweet Thursday, Deb. Yep, we had a fine time in NOLA. I have been laying low this week, taking it easy with the food and drink. I remember that you have a love & hate relationship with those snow geese but you get them in such huge numbers, it is not surprising. Northern Illinois is not part of their migratory flight path, so we don't see them very often in this area.

>220 Whisper1: Hi, Linda. Were you able to enjoy some of the highlights of NOLA when you did visit? I am sure it was tough, supervising the students.

Editado: Abr 6, 7:39 am

"A wildly talented high school girl soccer team becomes the (un)lucky survivors of a plane crash deep in the Canadian wilderness."

^ I started the TV series, "Yellowjackets". I have had this on my radar for awhile. It is a loose remake of Lord of the Flies. It has been pretty ambitious so far. Good cast. The second season has just come out. Has anyone else here seen it?

Abr 6, 7:51 am

'Morning, Mark! Sweet Thursday to you.

My feeders need attention, which I will ask Jenna to give them tomorrow as she has Good Friday off. I've got a few finches and nobody else right now.

Abr 6, 8:04 am

>224 karenmarie: Sweet Thursday, Karen. I freshened up my feeders yesterday. I need to buy more suet. They have been pounding through it. I saw 3 housefinch and a downy so far this AM.

Editado: Abr 11, 6:57 pm

Virginia, Autumn

October, I’m dragging the dog away from perfect birds
lifeless on the pavement. By the water, boys in dress blues
with bayonets, the blistered hulls of boxships. Everything
is sunshine. Everything is dead, or dying, and this isn’t
a new thought. I grew up here, but farther from the ocean.
Each April, they took us to the battlefield, marched us
in schoolhouse lines up courthouse steps: here
is where the war ended. Never mind that it was fall
before the final battleship lowered its flag; never mind
that we still haven’t fired the last gun. What business
do I have wanting a baby here: in this body
where I can’t keep my balance, this country
where we can’t keep anything alive that needs us,
or dares not to, not even the switchgrass
pale and starved for groundwater? And still,
I do want. I search the news for mention of the birds,
whatever poison or disease I’m sure is claiming them
in such great numbers: meadowlarks, house wrens,
chickadees, starlings. Once even a gray gull, pulled
open at the chest before we found him, hollowed
of his organs. It takes a long time—too long—
for me to understand the sun in this season
is blinding, and the birds are flying into windows
all around me, fourteen stories up. Flying into glass
and falling. What we love is rarely blameless.
Is it a failure that I wouldn’t trade this brightness?
I imagine pointing upward for my daughter:
Look, there, how it catches in the changing trees.

-Molly McCully Brown From Poem-A-Day

Abr 6, 8:17 am

Welcome back, Mark! Glad to hear you had such a great time in NOLA. Love the photos from the trip and the owls too :D

Abr 6, 8:30 am

>227 bell7: Thanks, Mary. We had a good time and yes, we love our owls.

Abr 6, 9:29 am

I remember wanting to watch Yellowjackets when the first season came out, but we don't get... Showtime, is it? And I can't add yet another streaming service! The number we have is already ridiculous.

Your talk of TV reminds me, though, that I still need to get back to Single Drunk Female.

Abr 6, 2:10 pm

>229 katiekrug: We are in the same boat, Katie. I must have been able to stream the 1st season of Yellowjackets, during a promotional deal. Maybe in preparation of S2. I am juggling several platforms. I don't need another. Good show, though.

Abr 6, 2:14 pm

Mark, for the first time in ages, I saw a chickadee on my feeder this morning! I don't know where they had disappeared to because I used to get them all the time but I think I haven't seen them in at least a couple of years. Anyhow, my most frequent daily visitors are still the red-breasted nuthatches and the goldfinches those are beginning to transform into their spring yellow!

Abr 6, 2:17 pm

>231 jessibud2: Sweet Thursday, Shelley. Thanks for the feeder report and congrats on the returning chickadees. I hope they stay around for you. We have them year-round. I am still seeing juncos but they will be leaving any day now. I just saw a Northern Flicker at my suet feeder. He has become a sem-regular.

Abr 6, 2:20 pm

-Mike Luckovich

Abr 6, 2:25 pm

>233 msf59: Justice finally not running backward.

Abr 6, 2:45 pm

>232 msf59: - I am also still seeing juncos, though not many, as recently as yesterday.
>233 msf59: - Funny, but I'm still not holding my breath...

Abr 6, 4:07 pm

>234 m.belljackson: Lets hope it leads to something, Marianne. He NEEDS to go DOWN...

>235 jessibud2: I am not holding my breath either but it would sure be sweet.

Abr 6, 5:27 pm

>225 msf59: It seems to be a day for feeder reports! In my case, the mockingbird has let up its attacks the last couple of days, and I've been seeing a lot of goldfinches. The males have their bright yellow back. Also cardinals, of course, and even an occasional Carolina wren. I've still just got the tray of unshelled seed out in the backyard, since I don't want to encourage the mockingbird to come back. But I did put out some hot suet in a tree, and we'll see if that will encourage the downys to return.

Abr 6, 6:03 pm

>226 msf59: How sad for bird lovers. Buildings and bird flu and other man made disasters.

Abr 6, 6:55 pm

>237 atozgrl: Thanks for the feeder report, Irene. I love those. I agree, the male goldfinch are really starting to color up for the season. I heard a Carolina Wren singing on my walk today. Good luck with that pesty mockingbird.

>238 quondame: I think that poem speaks volumes, Susan. I have requested one of her collections.

Abr 7, 6:57 am

>233 msf59: Brilliant.

Abr 7, 7:21 am

‘Morning, Mark, and happy Friday to you.

>225 msf59: Pounding through the suet. That’s what happens here, too. It’s just getting light, and there’s one finch on the mostly-empty wild bird seed feeder. I’m going to set up a hummingbird feeder today – well, Jenna and I – and refill all the other feeders. Again, Jenna and I, mostly Jenna. Louise saw a hummingbird two days ago.

>233 msf59: Ooh, love it. I have been staying away from news mostly, but cartoons and headlines about T**** make me happy.

>237 atozgrl: I’ve been seeing mockingbirds again, not at the feeders, but in the yard.

Abr 7, 7:24 am

>240 Caroline_McElwee: Happy Friday, Caroline.

>241 karenmarie: Morning, Karen. I failed to pick up suet yesterday and my favorite flicker came back, nosing around for goodies. Ooh, congrats on setting up the hummingbird feeder. I will do the same when I return from Texas. I saw a couple of mockingbirds in NOLA.

Editado: Abr 7, 8:03 am

"Talking of the Dead was the fourth novel published in 1996 by British author Helen Dunmore, a "chilling tie of sibling rivalry and sudden infant death" and has been described as one of the best novels in the 1990s. It was her first novel to be published in the United States."

AlphpaKit: D

I have read a few of Dunmore's novels but nothing rivals the first one, I read of hers- The Siege, which was amazing. I wanted to try another one and I had Talking to the Dead on shelf. This one is about 2 sisters. The youngest is visiting the eldest, just after the latter has her first baby. They are both seriously haunted by the death of their infant brother. This is a messy family tale, with many thorny issues peppered about. It is not always a pleasant read but what saves it, is Dunmore's strong, lyrical prose. I was saddened to hear that Dunmore died in 2017, at 64.

Abr 7, 12:51 pm

>233 msf59: Heh. If only.

>242 msf59: Wait. You’re going to Texas now?

Editado: Abr 7, 4:01 pm

>243 msf59: I agree The Siege is her best Mark, I've read it three times. I do like most of her others in different ways. I thought I'd read most of the novels, but according to my cataloge, only just over half! Sad she died so young.

Abr 8, 6:22 am

I loved The Siege as well, Mark. I read a couple of others but The Siege really stands out.

Abr 8, 6:28 am

'Morning, Mark, and happy Saturday to you.

Well, Jenna and I did not get the feeders filled or the hummingbird feeder out, darn it. It's on the list for today. Still dark here, but that's a blessing so I don't have to see Disappointed Birds.

Editado: Abr 8, 7:12 am

I agree, Mark , The Siege is her best book . I have read The Betrayal, The Greatcoat and House of Orphans .She was a great writer indeed . Happy Easter, and I am sure your family will have lots of with young Jack and the Easter Bunny!🐇🐣

Abr 8, 7:18 am

Happy Saturday, Mark! Has Jackson seen his new book? Or will he find it in his Easter basket?

Abr 8, 7:48 am

>244 Storeetllr: Happy Saturday, Mary. Yep, the Warbler is off to Texas on the 18th. This is a birding trip to the Rio Grande Valley. We have had this one on the books for awhile. It should be a blast.

>245 Caroline_McElwee: Wow, Caroline. You must really love The Siege. Grins...What is your next favorite of hers?

>246 lauralkeet: It looks like we are in total agreement on The Siege, Laura.

Abr 8, 7:53 am

>247 karenmarie: Morning, Karen. Hopefully you can get to those neglected feeders today. They are waiting...

>248 vancouverdeb: Happy Saturday, Deb. Thanks for chiming in on The Siege. I remember being disappointed in The Betrayal. How were the other 2? We are going to Bree's for the Easter holiday. I am sure they will have things set up for Jackson.

>249 Carmenere: Morning, Lynda. We forgot to show Jackson his new book. Duh! He spent the night, so we will show it to him before he leaves.

Editado: Abr 8, 1:23 pm

>250 msf59: Oh, my homepatch! In the early 80s, there was a new sanctuary established that is now very bird-tourist friendly at the old Rabb plantation (looked it up, it's called the Sabal Palm Sanctuary) in Brownsville. Chachalacas galore, some strange varieties of hummingbird. You'll see the odd Altamira oriole if you're patient since they're the natives of the area. It's April, so it shouldn't get above 90° too often. It will be super-muggy, though...but you're from Chicagoland, that's not new.

As you're peregrinating around, if you pass through Progreso, spit out the window from me....

ETA as we had pecan trees that attracted nesting Altamiras, I used to collect the fallen nests out-of-season. Here's an Altamira dad in breeding plumage on the edge of his nest:

Abr 8, 3:27 pm

>250 msf59: Wow, that’s so cool! What part of the Rio Grande Valley? East or west? Or central?

Abr 8, 4:30 pm

>250 msf59: Maybe A Spell of Winter, very different, as are each of her books Mark.

I think I'd read The Siege twice, then it was chosen for my RL book group, hence the third time.

Abr 8, 5:04 pm

>222 msf59:
Yes. I have been to the World War Ii museum in NOLA. At the time, I wasn't quite sure what to think about it. I had only been open a couple of years and so was incomplete. It was also more narrowly focused than it is now. It is the brainchild of Stephen Ambrose (he of Band of Brothers and Undaunted Courage fame.) The museum has lots in it, but was originally conceived to be a place to keep records about D-Day and the D-Day battle. After Ambrose's death the focus of the museum was expanded to be the National World War II museum by act of the U. S. Congress. There was debate at the time, because most people thought the museum should be located in Washington, D. C. New Orleans is an odd place to have such a museum given its problematic past with racism and the fact that WWII was probably the high point of the idea of the "Citizen Soldier", which was the group of people that Ambrose wrote most about. The museum has an extensive archive about soliders who fought in the D-Day Battle and just now is beginning to collect material about British, Canadian, and German soldier who fought in that battle. For me, that archive is reason enough to visit the museum. It does have an extensive permanent collection of museum pieces and regularly hosts traveling exhibits. It also seemed to me, that at the time I visited the entrance ticket was expensive - I think it was $20.00 per person per day. If museum's are your thing it would be worth the visit. One can always learn something from a museum.

>243 msf59:
I read House of Orphans by Helen Dunmore and liked it very much. It is one of those books that stays with you for a long time. That book is set in Finland and that is a country that American's don't know much about. The book had multiple layers of setting, and characters and it really made me think. I didn't like the ending, but that was because it was disturbing. It is the kind of dark ending that you would love. I think you should read House of Orphans. It is just your kind of book.

I have several Dunmore books in my TBR shelves and lists, but haven't gotten back to her yet. I have The Siege and The Betrayal. I also have The Greatcoat and The Lie.

Dunmore also wrote Young Adult novels. She was as well known for those in the U.K. as she was for her adult novels. She is another one of those authors who died to young.

Abr 8, 6:04 pm

>226 msf59:. Great poem!

Abr 9, 7:16 am

'Morning, Mark! Happy Sunday, Happy Easter to you.

Speaking of the WWII museum, I'd like to put in a good word for the National World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, MO. When we visited in 2010, I was stunned and continue to be stunned at how comprehensive, emotional, and artifact-filled it was. I could have visited multiple days, and even as it was, Bill and Jenna had to drag me out (almost kicking and screaming!).

On the bird front, the feeders are filled, and I've got visitors. The detailed report is on my thread. 😊

Editado: Abr 9, 7:38 am

>252 richardderus: Happy Sunday, Richard. I didn't realize you were from the RGV area. Thanks for the information. We fly into Harlingen and we are staying somewhere close to there. We are renting a vehicle, so we will cover a big area. Target places are South Padre Island, San Benito Wetlands, Salinero Bird Preserve and Santa Ana National Wildlife Preserve- among others. I will add Sabal Palm Sanctuary to the list.

I have seen both chachalacas in Costa Rica but would be happy to see more. I did get a brief look at an Altamira oriole in Cancun but would love to get better looks and a photo. They are similar to Hooded Orioles. Lovely birds.

-Hooded Oriole (NMP)

Editado: Abr 9, 8:01 am

>253 Storeetllr: Happy Easter, Mary. It looks like we will be covering mostly the eastern part of RVG, along the gulf, but I am sure we will be covering the central area too. Lots of exciting places to explore. Have you been?

>254 Caroline_McElwee: Thanks for the Dunmore info, Caroline. I am sure I will read one or two more of hers.

>255 benitastrnad: Thanks for the info on the WWII museum, Benita. I had no idea Stephen Ambrose was part of the development of the museum. Very interesting. I was also surprised that they decided on New Orleans. They did mention that the man who invented the Higgins Boat was from there but that is about it.

I hope you can bookhorn in The Siege. It is fantastic and I will add House of Orphans to the list.

>256 banjo123: Thanks, Rhonda. I will be seeking out more of her work.

>257 karenmarie: Happy Easter, Karen. I didn't realize they had a WWI museum in KC. Cool. We have one too, in our county called Cantigny. I will stop by shortly...

Editado: Abr 9, 10:11 am

^I wanted to share a few pics from the Swamp Tour we did in NOLA. It was on the Pearl River, about 30 miles from the city. Photos were tough to take and I saw very few birds. I snuck in the double-crested cormorant and the turtles pic, which was taken at Audubon Park.

Abr 9, 8:42 am


^I also saw many black-bellied whistling ducks on the Swamp Tour but could not get any photos. This was a Lifer. I also had a very brief look at a limpkin, deep in the bayou, which was also a Lifer. I hope to get better looks, while I am in Texas.


Abr 9, 8:56 am

>260 msf59: Fascinating Mark.

Abr 9, 10:12 am

>262 Caroline_McElwee: A unique experience, Caroline, although we saw many more alligators when we visited Florida.

Abr 9, 11:10 am

>259 msf59: >258 msf59: Sounds wonderful! I spent an idyllic week on Padre Island when I was 13, when there was only one motel and one restaurant on the entire island. It was magical. I always wanted to go back, but it never happened. I hope you take lots of pics of both birds and island and share them!

Abr 9, 11:25 am

>261 msf59: You should see lotsa limpkins in the San Benito Wetlands...what an amazing project that is! Treating sewage and restoring habitat and creating tourist dollars in one stroke. Yay for Texas A&M!

The Altamiras have a lovely song so I hope you can encounter them.

Yep...Mercedes was home. My mother was born there and dragged me kicking and screaming, there after leaving my father.

Abr 9, 3:16 pm

>214 msf59: I hope you enjoy that one. I can't say that I liked is as much as the first two though.....

>261 msf59: Oh wow! Stunning!

Abr 9, 3:28 pm

>222 msf59: Happy Sunday Mark. I visited New Orleans with students four times. The first time was shortly after hurrican Katrina destroyed so much of the outer area of downtown New Orleans. It was a miracle that the main area of touristry was not impacted, certainly not as much as the other areas. I took a bus tour through the Ninth Ward where I witnessed x's on doors with writing in the spaces that indicated how many were found dead in the house, and where the bodies were found.

The visits after the first, gradually saw a bit of improvement. Naturally, I read any book I could get my hands on regarding the impact of the hurricane on New Orleans. The book I would highly recommend is One Dead in Attic by Chris Rose.

Abr 9, 5:33 pm

>239 msf59: Happy Sunday, and happy Easter, Mark. I haven't seen the mockingbird in a few days, and the other birds seem to be slowly coming back. I'm still seeing lots of goldfinches, plus cardinals and house finches. I even saw a towhee on the ground beneath the feeder yesterday.

I haven't yet seen a downy on the suet feeder, but this morning there was a crow on the branch the feeder hangs from, getting his fill. Speaking of crows, you mentioned seeing a fish crow in NO. I know we have them here because I frequently hear them. I'm not entirely sure I would recognize one though, since we also have American crows. I'm pretty sure that was an American crow on the feeder this morning, but I don't know if I would recognize a fish crow if I saw it.

Abr 9, 6:11 pm

The Higgin's boat is the LCVP (Landing Craft Vehicle, Personnel). It was this boat that ferried the soldiers who landed on D-Day. It was invented by Andrew Jackson Higgins who was a native New Orleanian and who owned Higgins Industries in New Orleans. The original boat was designed using the swamp boats and shallow water boats of Louisiana as models.

It is interesting that the World War II Museum in New Orleans does NOT have an original Higgins Boat. It has a replica Higgins boat that as built as a project that used the original specifications from Higgins Industries as the pattern. There are original LCVP's on display at several locations around the U. S. Cantigny Park in Wheaton, IL. is one of those locations. That boat was discovered in Normandy, France, so is it likely a boat that was used in the D-Day Battle. Take a look at the Wikipedia entry for "Higgins Boat" for more information.

The Higgins Boat is the reason why the World War II Museum is in NOLA. It was the inspiration for the museum, but Ambrose was the driving force behind it. He donated over $500,000 in seed money to get it started. It was his popularity and persistence that kept a steady stream of money flowing into the plan that kept it going. As I said, it is worth the visit, even if it is a strange place to have the official WWII museum.

The World War I Museum is in Kansas City, Missouri. It is there because the Liberty Memorial was built there in 1926 by a group of Kansas City millionaires with the help of over 1 million dollars in donations from people all over the country. In 1961 the monument was restored and rededicated by former President Harry S. Truman and in 2014 it was designed, by act of Congress, as an official World War I Museum.

The monument has long been known by a local nickname. "The Big Dick" due to its unfortunate shape. I said that once in public and my cousin was very offended by my reference to it using that name. However, if you give anybody directions in Kansas City and use that term, they immediately know what you are talking about. Just as in Nashville - everybody knows what the "Batman" Building is and strangers driving through have no trouble agreeing that that particular building looks like it is the "Batman" Building.

The World War I Museum is not just a museum. It is also an archive and has extensive research holdings. If you are looking for information on any WWI veteran - American, Canadian, French, German, British, Belgic, African, Russian, this is the place to start. They have been collecting information since the 1930's and so their research facility is second to none, other than maybe the British, French, or German state archives.

Another unique feature of this museum is that it is largely underground. Other than the projectile that is seen above ground, it seems like there is no museum there and many people looking for it confuse the Kansas City Union Railroad station across the street as the WWI Museum. Don't be fooled by the non-appearance appearance of the museum. There is an extensive museum and archive there. The museum and grounds were designed by George Kessler, who designed the "City Beautiful" program for Kansas City. This design is responsible for the large boulevards and the placement of monumental statues and buildings throughout the downtown of K. C. He is also the reason why K.C. has more public fountains than does the city of Rome, Italy.

I have not actually been in the museum, but I have been in that area of downtown several times. It is a beautiful area and people are often surprised to see this kind of landscaping and city design in K.C. It is very progressive considering that it was designed and built in the 1920's.

If you are in K.C. a visit there should be on your list of things to do.

Editado: Abr 9, 8:36 pm

^Jackson on his Easter Egg hunt, in Mommy's backyard- just deciding where to go. ❤️

Abr 9, 8:41 pm

>264 Storeetllr: I am so glad you have fond memories of South Padre Island, Mary. I am really looking forward to visiting this place.

>265 richardderus: Looking forward to visiting San Benito Wetlands and seeing lots of limpkins, Richard, among other things. I did not know the wonderful history behind this magical place.

>266 figsfromthistle: Happy Easter, Anita. I have to say I am enjoying The Winners well enough but WHY does it have to be SO DARN LONG??

Editado: Abr 9, 8:51 pm

>267 Whisper1: Happy Easter, Linda. Thanks for chiming in again on NOLA. Very interesting that you witnessed the aftermath of Katrina. I will have to check out One Dead in Attic. I highly recommend Zeitoun and Five Days at Memorial. Have you read either?

>268 atozgrl: Happy Easter, Irene. Thanks for the feeder report. I love getting those. Yes, I did see more than a few fish crows in NOLA, which was a LIFER for me. They look identical to American crow but have a very different sound. It is almost comical.

Editado: Abr 9, 8:58 pm

>269 benitastrnad: Wow! Thanks for the extensive information on the Higgins boat, Benita. I had no idea that is was modeled after a swamp boat, which makes perfect sense. I am also shocked that the WWII Museum in NOLA does not have an original Higgins boat. WTH?

Fascinating info on the WWI museum in KC. That might be a place worth checking out. I was in KC for a wedding 2 years ago but never had a chance to explore the city.

^Higgins Boat (NMP) 😁

Abr 9, 10:13 pm

>270 msf59: HI Mark, Very very cute picture of Jackson on his Easter egg hunt!

Abr 9, 10:50 pm

>269 benitastrnad: We may not associate NOLA with WWII specifically, but it must have been an important port in the war effort - so much of the supplies that were routed east to Saint Louise MO, where my father spent a couple of years in charge of keeping track of them, must have gone down river to be shipped from there.

Abr 10, 1:21 am

What fabulous pictures >260 msf59: and >261 msf59:, Mark! As much as raccoons can be dreadful nuisance - we hear them in the back yard behind ours, fighting over cherries on a couple of trees on in the backyard, that picture is very cute. Jackson looks quite fascinated to be hunting for Easter Eggs. Glad you had a wonderful Easter! I did too, just got back from a large family dinner at my sister's. Dave is working all weekend, so we are getting together with son William , his wife and our two grandkids next weekend. I saw Miles and Melissa just briefly yesterday at dinner when I stopped by drop off some Easter Chocolate and and Easter Cards for the kids.

I have read 4 books by Helen Dunmore. I really enjoyed House of Orphans. so as Caroline as also recommended it, that might be one to put on your list. I was less keen on The Greatcoat, so I think you could safely skip that one.

Editado: Abr 11, 6:57 am

Hi Mark! Happy Day After Sunday to you.

>261 msf59: and >262 Caroline_McElwee: Very nice.

>270 msf59: Cute pic. I hope he had fun looking for eggs.

Finches, a Cowbird, and yesterday a Carolina Wren teasing me with nest-building-but-probably-abandoned efforts in the corner where a downspout meets the house here at my Sunroom window. Still no hummingbird sightings.

edited to add Wren.

Abr 10, 8:02 am

>274 mdoris: Thanks, Mary. I hope you had a good holiday weekend.

>275 quondame: Hi, Susan. Good to see you. Very interesting point about NOLA being a key shipping point during WWII. Was your father a soldier at the time?

>276 vancouverdeb: Hi, Deb. Glad you had such a nice Easter and at least got to see the grandkids for a bit. Sean's brothers have children too, so there were plenty of kids running around. We were so fortunate that the weather was beautiful. We have had raccoons in our backyard too. They don't pose much of a problem here but will get into our garbage can now and then. Thanks for the Dunmore input.

>277 karenmarie: Morning, Karen. Glad you like the pics. It was a nice Easter and the meal was wonderful. Nothing happening at my feeders at the moment.

Abr 10, 8:07 am

^Two buddies just hanging out on a fine Spring morning. A European Starling and Northern Flicker.

^Tree Swallow. They are back for the season and will be buzzing around nearly every preserve.

^With the warmer temps and bird activity increasing, I am finally getting more photo opportunities.

Abr 10, 9:41 pm

>270 msf59: What a cute picture of Jackson! Looks like you had a great Easter.

Today's feeder report is not so good. After two days solid of rain, the front came through yesterday and temperatures dropped to the low 30's last night. Since it got cold again, the mockingbird is back today, and I didn't see any of the other birds on the feeder. There are probably still some around, sneaking down to the feeder whenever the mockingbird flies off temporarily, but I didn't see them today. Sigh.

We're supposed to get back up to 80 degrees later this week, so I hope this is just temporary.

Abr 11, 12:54 am

Hopelessly behind here. Love the Drag Queen comic, and Jackson egg hunting, of course. And all the books -- so many! LOL.

Wishing you a Happy Tuesday!!

Abr 11, 1:02 am

>278 msf59: My dad was in the army and was in charge of some aspect of directing supplies from everywhere on the continental USA west of the Mississippi. He kind of wore himself to exhaustion and it took 5 people to replace him. My older brother was born in 1944 in St. Louis.

Abr 11, 6:59 am

'Morning, Mark, and happy Tuesday to you.

Good news! I saw my first hummingbird of the season, taking a nice long drink. And again, just now, a hummingbird was resting on the pole supporting the feeder.

Abr 11, 7:23 am

>280 atozgrl: Morning, Irene. Glad you like the Jackson pic. Sorry to hear about the cooler temps and the return of the mockingbird. We will hit the 70s today, which will feel marvelous.

>281 Berly: Hi, Kimmers. We have missed you. Hope all is well. Glad you like my latest postings. You know I love sharing. I am deep into two Chunksters right now, which seem to be dominating my April reading.

>282 quondame: It sounds like your father was quite a soldier and contributed mightily to the war effort. Did he get out after the war?

Editado: Abr 11, 7:26 am

>283 karenmarie: Good morning, Karen and thank you so much for the book. Sue and I loved it and can't wait to read it to Jackson.

Hooray for the hummingbird sighting! I will wait until after my Texas trip before hanging up mine.

Abr 11, 10:21 am

Howdy, Mark! Although they've probably been around for a while, I spotted my first robin of spring yesterday. Now, it's official!

Abr 11, 10:41 am

Mark - today's Sierra Club DAILY RAY OF HOPE (!!!)

features Sandhill Cranes in New Mexico.

No Songbirds up here yet - nice weather with the promise of rain.

Travels and Jackson - That's the Life!

Abr 11, 11:32 am

>270 msf59: Oh, my gosh! What a cutie! The expression on his face!

>271 msf59: I understand Padre Island is really built up now. From what you’ve said, though, they’ve made a reserve on the south part of the island. If so, I’m glad.

Abr 11, 2:36 pm

>286 Carmenere: Howdy, Lynda. Congrats on your FOY robin. They have been here in large numbers for several weeks now. I love watching the different species arrive for the season or just passing through.

>287 m.belljackson: Hi, Marianne. Hooray for the New Mexico Sandhills. If you listen closely, I bet your songbirds have arrived. They are singing everywhere here. I am hoping to take Jackson for a walk in the woods on Friday.

>288 Storeetllr: Hi, Mary. When we saw Jackson do this with his finger, we all cracked up and hoped that someone got a photo of it. I got lucky.

It sounds like a big area of San Padre Island has been put aside for the wildlife. That is why it is such a Hot Spot.

Abr 11, 5:32 pm

>284 msf59: Yes and no. He was a Physics PhD and went to work for the Naval Ordnance Test Center at China Lake, CA as a civilian, which is where I grew up. They changed the name to Naval Weapons Center before I left - some of the lead scientists used the "Test" in the title to develop the Sidewinder technology without actual authorization.
His best college friend spent WWII working on radar.

Abr 11, 6:29 pm

>290 quondame: Thanks for the info on your father. Did he retire from there? Sounds like an interesting and notable career.

Editado: Abr 11, 7:02 pm

-Bill Bramhall
Este tópico foi continuado por Mark's Reading Place: Chapter Six.