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Big Birds Day

I don't know about you, but adjusting to daylight savings time has taken longer than usual for me this year. It just feels so weird for it to be broad daylight at 6, and later. Then too, I don't like dark mornings either. I mentioned in my last post how lovely the weather has been, and while that is mostly true, it has been unseasonably hot with little to no rain. According to the newspaper we are a fraction above normal rainfall for this time of year, due for the most part because of our crazy rainy January, if this keeps up for much longer that tiny surplus will be no more.

Without further ado, let's get to our main topic for the day....

This time last year I was in the midst of my owl obsession, which, we all thought would be easily repeated this year. Remember how cute they were?
I'll bet you also remember that you were getting sick of seeing them! Well, I heard from someone in that neighborhood that although they had not seen any owls this year, they heard them. That was enough for me to go on a hunt, riding my bike first to their former home, and coming across two of my favorite things...an old VW bug with fallen tabebuia blooms.
Riding every street, I looked for ground evidence, finding none. Discouraged, once I got home I decided to make a trip over to Greenwood Cemetery where I'd heard from folks that there is a huge eagle's nest. There are both a huge number of trees and the place is big, so when I was told it was in a giant pine tree I had at least that to go on. Mostly there are oak trees, so that helped a lot. Driving slowly, I scanned my surroundings. I'm always amazed at the decorations people come up with, especially in the area they call "baby land," a very sad place indeed.
The pine trees came into view and indeed there is a gigantic nest,
with no eagles in sight. I walked around looking at it from every direction, finding no sign of life. Because it is not far from our parent's graves, I drove by their marker that is in serious need of cleaning. Why didn't I think of that before I went?

Along the way I saw this marker which holds some meaning for us. Not because we knew Joe Tinker, but Tinker Field was the home to a minor league baseball team called the SunRays when the children were young. Or youngish anyway. You've probably heard the story of how Bruce worked the concession stand there in order to garner free tickets for the boys to be able to go to the games. Then too, I once took Jonathan to see a Spring Training game there, and he got to see Tommy Lasorda when he was the manager of the Dodgers, his favorite team. Those were some fun days.
As with most things that have any meaning in Orlando, Tinker Field has been torn down. :(

Bruce's boss, Steve is a mighty nice guy. He looks it, doesn't he?
One of the things I really like about Steve, as you can imagine coming from a wife, is that he has great respect for Bruce and his abilities. He came to have a look at the job and was shocked at how difficult it really is. Tearing apart part of the mall, and rebuilding it into something beautiful is no easy feat, and the way the job has been going, shows just that. Steve has every confidence that Bruce can make it happen and he is not shy about saying so. We met for dinner at Ocean Prime, a lovely restaurant we'd never been too before. Excellent in every way, including this carrot cake we shared.
Yesterday morning, oh yes, we are finally getting to the title shout out, after the previous days disappointment, I decided to ride over to see if our neighborhood eagle was to be found. Riding down Ferncreek in that direction, I noticed a side street with multiple blooming tabebuia trees. Mexican flame vine as a bonus!
Then I noticed some beautiful orangish daisies in a yard where the folks were out working. I asked if I could photograph them, and was given the go-ahead.
Aren't they sweet? Even more wonderful is the story of these daisies. I'm pretty sure her name was Linda, but don't quote me on that, went on to explain that they came from her Mother who is turning 104 years old today!! Linda's mother got them from another friend, and Linda has had them in her yard for over 30 years. I had just the most wonderful visit with them...so many Orlando connections! I would write more, but I'll never finish this post at this rate.

What I will tell you is that during our conversation the man asked me if I knew about an eagle's nest in Harbour Island??? No way!! Thanks, and thanks some more. An eagle's nest within biking distance is more than I could have ever hoped for, but here it is my friends.
The nest is gigantic! Way high in the air it is hard to gauge, but according to this, which has some amazing eagle shots should you care, generally the nests are between 5 and 6 feet across and 3 feet deep!! Honestly, seeing nature in action is just the best. As you can imagine, I very well might have a new obsession....

I've seen people do some really stupid stuff with a mobile phone in their hand, but this guy I saw as I turned into our neighborhood has either really, really good balance, or is really not thinking right.
After lunch while returning from some errands, lo and behold, the white pelicans were back in Lake Pineloch within my camera's range!! Parking the car, I ran across the street to watch, and what a sight they are.
This is a really neat blog with information about white pelicans, including how they run in packs and fluff the water looking for prey. I learned from another sight that they can weigh up to 30 pounds and have a nine foot wingspan. They kept getting closer to the shoreline along Summerlin where I was spotted by our friend Pat while I was staying close to the road barrier with camera in hand.
It is hard to describe what a cool sight it is in person. Then too, a few would fly in; do you suppose this is where the idea of water skiing came from?
It seems as if other birds want to be nearby, perhaps to steal a fish? Don't know, but I did see several blue herons keeping close watch on the activity.
I wish they showed up better...these are the days when I so wish my zoom was longer!!

So, there you go...from eagles to white pelicans, it is so good to be back out and about.

Having stopped writing, and gone on my bike ride, my next post will be birdy once again. Oh my, what a morning!

Always ready with my camera,

Gail
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