Let me say this upfront, I have really been unmotivated to blog in the last few days as after what happened in Orlando. My exploits don't matter. The families of 50 people, 50 young people are grieving and the families of just as many are worried about the health and recovery of loved ones. and still more are trying to quell the PTSD from being there. I don't like stereotyping this as the LGBT community as these are just people...people out having fun on a Saturday night until they weren't.
I can't relate to this tragedy. I cannot know how those affected, feel. What I feel is different. I can say that I understand their losses but I don;t know if I can even say that. I was very surprised to see that even in northern New Hampshire on the morning after this event, flags all over were half-mast. This is not just an LGBT issue this is an American issue, if the LGBT community wants to be part of a cohesive society and not a separate society they need to understand this and I think many do.
Unfortunately crap happens in America, but we do have too many guns and this is from a gun owner, but guns were not the problem here. How to integrate these 1st generation immigrant children into our or English, or French society seems to be something that somewhere we all have forgotten how to do, maybe it is religion, culture, but IDK. We are not and have never been safe anywhere all the time here--be it a night club or a school. Terrible stuff has happened in the last 150 years, it is just that we have more people and more people means bigger and more events, and more media means we learn about it. We cannot have metal detectors at little league games this summer, we cannot have malls locked down like airports, if it becomes that, the bad guys have truly won.
Save the countless recollections of this tragedy, and just before, I have contributed my worthless opinion, I continued on into New England and really enjoyed myself. It wasn't easy birding, as the weather....well what else would it be?
So here is my story of birding if anyone still cares:
Big Year Total: 734
Coded Birds: 74
number to go to old record: 16
showshoes 4 (isn't going to be any more)
Lifers seen this year: 56
nights slept in car: 9
You can fault me for be fat and ugly, and a bad birder, you can fault my many shortcomings as in my life, my choices, my bad attitude, my opinionated opinions, and just about anything about me. You cannot, though, fault my three bright, friendly and wonderfully adjusted children nor my very special and extremely nice and loving wife.
New Hampshire on there roads gives road numbers and directions to the liquor store. I needed some, as everything now hung in the balance. It was Sunday and they were closed.
The directions were simple, take a right at the moose and drive six miles to the sign.
I was going to ask if it was my or the moose's right until I figured it out that they were both the same, think about that, how could that be possible? Well I'm in the car, not folding a moose's antler...
We arrived before 6am, met up with Sue Wemyss. The weather WAS wrong, it had warmed overnight and it wasn’t below freezing on top so up we went in a “Stagecoach” to get the much desired thrush ......split off the gray cheeked thrush in 1995. We were the intrepid birders for the year. If a Yellowhammer was reported in Gambell on the far boneyard with winds like this even Paul Lehman would have not gone out and try to find it.
Sue was an Olympian, 1984 Sarajevo, she got 28th in the woman's 20km ski race, how cool is that!!, Plus she competed in 3 other races. All this and she took us up the hill to see a bird, and put up with lowly Olaf. She still directs the local ski trails and has helped many of the teams giving back to her hobby. I hope to do that with birding, although doubt I'll be in much demand.
The comments I get on this shirt! The stewardess just stopped me to read it on the plane...
We arrived in Vinalhaven just before noon, found our inn and checked into our first room, which as it turned out, had a broken toilet, undeterred by that we made it work and went looking around. Silja bought a book at the used bookstore about the regulations in family farming and sustainable agriculture and we both bought lobster rolls.
They have 5 researchers staying there and we met two who rowed out to the boat, it is a long and lonely summer IMHO on that barren rock weighing tern chicks...
I don’t see the rare target bird every time. I am just a human birder. I dip, I dipped here, I’ll dip again. I saw the bird's hole…it didn’t work out to stay for another day at this, it is a waste to leave and come back if needed but I might have to.
The wine bottle was open, the cheese was out, and the juice glasses ready when I arrived. Life was good despite no bird. I am living the dream....We ate and drank the night away on the deck and then at the Sand Bar, not much else was open..the service was about as bad as it could be even a little drunk, it seemed bad. This is no party town. We watched the tide come in and went to bed.
My lovely bride....
we really liked the hinged floating docks
and many of the boats were cool.
It was somber in many ways and we discussed the events. I did have a strange liking for all things New England. Lobster rolls....I felt an urge to buy a Bosox hat and even a Bruins hat. I know both team's histories well,. We looked at college websites for Bowdoin College for Lena. I looked at New Hampshire and Maine property. I guess I like everything New England EXCEPT the Patriots....Nope, I can never be a fan of them....go green. I just need a longer visit than a day to get a better feel for the place.
I'm now at 734......not bad, the tropicbird isn't in the clear yet, I'll get a shot again, I got a couple of bothersome birds and a garganey on the way.....where I end up next...well, I may not even know. Silja dropped me off at the airport in Portland and away I went, I'll say I'm heading west or south as there isn't much east or north of Portland ME..or maybe I'm off to Pond Inlet Baffin island NWT? I may be prone to not saying...
I'm still sorry about the whole of Orlando, my condolences, if that has any value.