Quick quiz — how many times have you said or heard someone say ‘I can’t wait for this year to be over!’? A hundred? A thousand? A gazillion? I, myself, must have said it a quadtrillion-million-heptazillion times. Yes, heptazillion is a real number.
Well, we’ve all gotten our wish because it’s OVAH! Twenty-twenty is hi-stor-reeeeeee, with extra e’s and they rhyme with goodbye-eeeeee.
However, and I am sorry to rain on our pitiful parade, but just because the year is changing and new calendars are getting tacked to walls everywhere, that doesn’t mean the nastiness and that-which-shall-not-be-named is going bye-bye.
Like he-who-shall-not-be-named, COVID (oops, I named it), will continue to rear its regal (thus the name, corona, for crown), protein-coated head long into twenty-twenty-one. Sorry, but someone had to tell you the bad news.
Sooooooo, until there’s an ‘all clear’ notice from Dr. Hottie…
…wear your masks and keep practicing good social-distancing.
Now, on to more pleasant topics. I have a Cooper’s hawk that is chowing down on my sparrows.
A few times each week he removes one from the flock and I won’t say I’m sad. Sparrows are nasty to Eastern bluebirds. They’ve been known to kill bluebirds in the bluebird’s nest box and lay eggs on top of the carcass.
I also have a Golden eagle who’s been hunting the ducks.
This eagle gets my feathers all ruffled because my ducks are sacred. As long as I’m writing about my ducks, how about a little tune?
My life would be very lonely without my ducks. Sigh.
Okay, let’s travel back in time to January, 2020, and see what the highlight for the month was.
Well, what do you know, I was visited by a young Cooper’s hawk. Cool.
Okay, let’s keep going through the months.
The highlight for me was I had my left hip replaced. And the bird of the month? Drumroll, please.
I was visited by bluebirds. Double cool.
A robin managed to pull a worm out of the warming soil.
The male American goldfinches started molting.
The grosbeaks returned.
The juvenile bluebirds came to visit Grandma. Awwww, they’re so cute.
The Baltimore orioles were happily flying around the yard.
The Cooper’s hawk was still hanging around (or arrived, I can’t tell if it’s the same hawk or a different one).
The juvenile Ruby-throats were visiting the nectar feeders.
I found some Painted turtle hatchlings.
…a Red-tailed hawk sat on one of my ducks. (Go here for the video: https://youtu.be/0wHmkBNSgCs)
I published a book of poems to help raise money for ovarian cancer survivors. (It’s only $3.99 and all the proceeds are donated. https://amzn.to/3fsaIvK)
…my friend, Bob, helped me take down the roof of the screen house. Actually, he did all the work. I manned the camera.
Bluebirds arrived to celebrate my birthday (thank you, Dyan) and they’re still here!!!!!
Plus, I received a cool mealworm feeder from my friend, Bob.
And and and he gave me a heated birdbath.
And, my friend, Bob, put up the bluebird nesting box he got me as a gift.
Moving on to other birds, a winter plumage Starling came by for a snack as he was passing through the area.
Let’s do a rollcall for some other songbirds who visited in December.
Clockwise, starting with the upper left photo: American robin, American robin on the winterberries, female Downy woodpecker, female Hairy woodpecker, Mourning dove, Blue-jay, and, last but not least, male Northern cardinal (below).
Did you know when you see a cardinal it’s the spirit of someone you love, who has passed on, coming back to visit you? I always say hello to my mother when I see one.
Okay, that just about wraps up this end of year post. I do want to offer my deepest sympathies to all the people who have lost someone or more than one, for whatever reason, not just COVID. Twenty-twenty was a very sad year.
Twenty-Twenty The darkness arrived in the twilight of the year Shaped as a crown, cloaked in a protein robe. Silently it crept Bringing with it death and despair. Hope and joy fled before it Sorrow and fear followed in its wake. The world suffered great losses Loved ones perished as loneliness grew. The months passed The year grew old. The darkness prospered Encouraged by those who refused to believe. The deceased knew Their souls cried out for the truth. The bells tolled louder The darkness turned black. The year came to an end, smothering the light For the darkness remained. We battle on.
Blessed be and Happy New Year and may 2021 be gentle to you. :}
Mi manchi, mia amata immortale.