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Baltimore Report

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Howdy from Baltimore! I have my camera, and my sister's wireless, but I'm working on a borrowed laptop right now, so I can't post photos. I'm in the DC area to have a mini-family reunion (lacking only my brother and his family, and Bill and Phoebe, and sundry nieces and nephews). I've got to give a talk on bird painting at the National Zoo on Thursday night at 7 pm. Man, it's great to hang out with my three sisters, two brother-in-laws, and my mom. We walked at Kinder Park in Severna Park, Maryland all morning. We got lost on the trails on its 260-acre expanse, but in the process I checked their nicely baffled and maintained bluebird boxes (about eight nests, four with eggs). I have the bluebirding bug so bad that I can't help but check other people's boxes. It was so neat to show bluebird eggs to my mom, who I doubt had ever seen them. But the best moment was when Mom sat down on a bench to rest and let me and Liam catch up. There was a brown thrasher singing its heart out atop an oak right overhead. Mom knew what it was instantly, though it probably had been decades since she'd heard one sing. That was her mother's favorite bird. It was a circle, complete. We must have walked four miles or more through the spring sunshine. I found an active red fox den, and my nephew Evan discovered three cattle egrets hunting in a ditch. Lest I descend into laptop geekdom, I will return to the visiting. Phoebe will be posting some prepared posts about painting long-tailed manakins in the coming days. And then you will get your Chet Baker fix again. I know why you're here. It's not about birds. It's about the dog.


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