I got down to the lake this morning in time to watch two great blue herons soar in from wherever it is that they spend the night. Is there a rookery nearby? If there is, I've never seen it.
The first two weeks of May were chilly and rainy and stunted, so now that May is finally May, and the world is a-bloom and a-twitter, I want everything to slow down so that summer doesn't get here too fast. May and October are my favorite months; I love months where things are happening and changing--blooming, burrowing, raising babies, building nests, digging tunnels, laying eggs, getting ready to hibernate, getting ready to fly, turning red and falling from the branch or turning red and blooming in my patio flowerpot.
The lazy indolence of summer and the frozen silence of winter have their beauties, too, but I like the action of spring and fall.
And now spring is zooooooming forward!
At the lake, the warblers and blackbirds and Eastern kingbirds and robins and cardinals and orioles and goldfinches and bluebirds are swooping and chattering and whistling and chirping and trilling and singing. The herons stalk fish. The egrets leap out of trees (seriously! right over my head!) and swoop off over the lake. Turtles line up on logs and sun themselves until I try to take their picture, and then plop! plop! plop! into the water they go.
As I trotted around the lake, taking shoeboxy pictures of appleblossoms and birds (note: shoeboxy meaning that in the old days, when we used film, prints of this kind of picture invariably ended up in a shoebox in the closet instead of a photo album), a dog-walker approached. "Did you see the eagle?" she asked.
Now, you know that I pride myself on seeing eagles. I saw one just three mornings ago--he had taken over the tree that is usually crowded with cormorants. But I had not seen an eagle this morning, and I was eager to.
"Right over there," she said, pointing. "In that last tree on the spit of land." I looked but saw nothing, just a darkish blob that could have been a nest.
"I love seeing eagles," she said. "It puts me in a good frame of mind for the whole day." And she walked on, and I trotted back to the tree to see the eagle, who turned out to be ...
Now, I am sure that she knows the difference between an eagle and a heron, and I assume that, with her dog, she just kept walking after spotting the big form in the tree. And I, the journalist, was left with a moral dilemma: Should I let her continue to think she saw an eagle? Or should I set the record straight? Which is more important--happiness under false pretenses? Or accuracy?
Reader, I let her go.
On the far side of the lake, I watched a heron sashay through the water. Here he is: