Monday, October 29, 2007

Flashback: Getting to Cape May

I'm home again, and I'm exhausted! I was so happy to see Kat, to sleep in my own bed, and to be back in familiar surroundings, but I also miss Cape May. Actually, I missed it as soon as I crossed the bridge and got on the Garden State Parkway yesterday afternoon.

There is a SO MUCH to tell you about the weekend; I'll go in chronological order and give you a little account of each day's activities.

I drove to Cape May Thursday after work; en route, I got lucky:
Woo hoo, all sevens! What do I win?

The Cape Harbor Motel: clean, comfy, and affordable:


Down at Cape May Point near the lighthouse, I saw my first warbler--a palm warbler amongst some bare shrubs:

At the convention center, I walked into the vendor show area and met my first celebrity!--Wildbird on the Fly, editor of WildBird Magazine (oh, she's the cute one on the right; pay no attention to the chubby-cheeked geek on the left):My first lifer of the trip was a Savannah sparrow, seen on a field trip to the Beanery:Not a great photo, but note how dark it was with the rain coming down; it was wet and miserable, and Susan of Lake Life and I were soaked to the skin by the time the Beanery field trip was over. However, we got some good looks at a few birds, both in the trees and overhead.

I can tell you that the migration flightline definitely runs through Cape May. All weekend, we saw flocks of everything from red-winged blackbirds and robins to double-crested cormorants and great blue herons, all heading for their winter homes down south. It was awe-inspiring to see groups of 200+ cormorants, all focused on getting to their destination.

I'll flash-forward now to my drive home because, after all I'd seen and learned during the weekend programs and birding walks, I really began to think about this whole fall migration business. Like everyone else, I learned about bird migrations when I was a kid in science classes. What I didn't learn in school or even in these last few years of learning bird ID, behaviors, and so forth, is that a lot of birds don't survive the fall migration. I don't know if I just missed that part of 4th grade science with Miss Gomez or maybe I just tuned it out (you know how bird death bothers me), but I never really thought about the fact that, despite their preparations of packing on the fat stores and staying together for safety, a lot of birds will die en route to their winter vacation homes.

Thinking about it last night in the car as I watched another flock of cormorants flying over me, I wondered: Am I naive or just dumb? Neither option is very comforting. Of course, some birds die; it happens every day. But somehow, this was different. I imagined what it would be like to be forced to pack up, leave my home, and walk hundreds of miles to a new home. Along the way, there would be dangers--predators, man-made obstacles, and others around me competing for what food and drink were available on the way. I wouldn't have a choice about leaving; I'd be compelled by instinct to do this, not just once but every autumn, so I could get away from the snows of the north. This would be no fun vacation, no retirement trip in the luxury RV to Texas or Florida for the winter visitors from up north. During this "vacation," I could die at any moment. I might collapse from exhaustion, unable to continue because I hadn't brought enough food or couldn't find enough on the road. Someone might just decide I'm an easy meal and kill me. I met encounter a storm that blows me so off course I can't recover; I'm separated from my traveling companions and I'm lost. Finally, I just lay down on the side of the road, confused and tired, and sleep until I don't wake up again.

I know that to most birders, all these things are so obvious on their face as to be silly. But as I said, I just didn't think about that before this weekend. As I drove on toward Philadelphia in the fading sunlight of the day, I was filled with a sadness I couldn't shake. I thought about that forced "vacation" all the way home.

Spring migration at Oil Creek had been a wonderful experience; the birds were all dressed in their finest outfits, excitedly singing and looking for mates; I could sense the thrill of possibility in the air. Most importantly, these birds were coming home. They'd survived the trip south and the trip back north, and now they were singing and fluttering, ready to create the next generation of birds. Fall migration is different, though. Everyone has to leave; all the nests they'd worked to build, all the great hunting spots they'd worked to find, all the warm sunshine and gentle breezes of spring and summer are over, and now they're were facing a hard flight away.

For me, it's just a lot to think about. I looked up at a passing flock of 20 or so great egrets, and I whispered, "Good luck."

28 comments:

dguzman said...

I just re-read this and realized how depressed I sound--I'm not! I had a blast! The trip was perfect. I just learned some things I guess I wasn't ready to learn.

Dr. Monkey Von Monkerstein said...

I neverrealized how rough migrating birds had it until I saw "Winged Migration." Glad you had a good time!

Mary said...

No, Delia. You aren't depressing at all. I thoroughly enjoyed your musings about the death of migrants. You are a true bird lady and I'm glad you shared your feelings of dread and wonder for them. I was sad when the hummingbirds left for their incredible journey - knowing many won't make it...

I am so glad you had a great time and I'm looking forward to more!!!!

Earl Cootie said...

Yikes, I have to leave the room for some of the scenes in Winged Migration. I mean, I'm aware that life's not a bed of suet, but I can do without the images. I'm still haunted by the memory of a wounded robin I saw in the middle of a busy highway a few years back.

KGMom said...

Ahh-Delia--yes, you did sound depressed, or at least very rueful. Life can be hard on all creatures. But of course without life we do not experience all life's joys. Not very well said, but heartfelt.
I too look at migrating birds--geese and such--and think "god speed." I read and loved the story of the Snow Goose years ago.

elizabird said...

You are right...life is hard as a bird. How about monarchs or buckeyes or dragonflies they are so much smaller and seem much more frail on their migration. Yikes

One of the interesting about things about migration to me is which way is home? Do birds leave their home in the south where there is tons of food but more competition for nesting space to go north?. Or is their home up north where there is plenty of space and food in the breeding season...but t freezes later on? Are Norte Americanos so egocentric to think that the paradises these birds winter in are not the real home to birds?

How's that thought to twist your thinker?

It was great to reconnect.

elizabird

FranIAm said...

OMG this is so beautiful. Thank you. I don't think you sound depressed.

The migration information was so moving to me. So thanks!

And Delia my girl, I may have Mr He Is and you have Kat, and I long ago resolved my orientation.

But that does not mean I don't get to find you too darn cute. In another life I might have to chase you down sister!

The picture is great, but let me tell you it is the words and the spirit that get me every time. You rock.

OK now I sound all internet-y stalkerish. I am not.

I am going to put a post up just for you though so that may push the stalker button a bit!

My troll is back by the way. UGH.

FranIAm said...

As a bird watcher, you will enjoy this.

As a progresive Pennsylvanian, you may enjoy this.

dguzman said...

Winged Migration sounds like March of the Penguins, which is only the second movie ever to make me cry. I think I might skip it....

Thanks all of you for your thoughts and comments; it is a rough world out there indeed, but when there are such friends to be had as you--it makes it easier!

Liz--I thought about that too--whether home is in the south or in the north. That IS a twister, though. Who knows?

Fran, back at ya. Thanks for those links!

Susan said...

Wow Delia, what a great post - Obviously you did more thinking than I did on the way home! My thoughts went more like "Where was that Baskin-Robbins I saw on the way up?" and "Wow, it's a lot harder to read these Mapquest directions in reverse."

dguzman said...

Susan, I too had some trouble reading the Mapquest stuff backwards; somehow, I got lost trying to get back on the parkway, then I missed my exit to Harrisburg--I added almost two hours to my trip as a result!

Mary said...

I can't read Mapquest backwards, either. I always take wrong turns and backtrack.

I think there are Yahoo driving directions that gives them in reverse.

Susan Gets Native said...

Always print out reverse directions. And never take the word of an Enterprise employee.
Those are my new travel rules to live by.

Amy said...

You are too funny, Delia. Such a pleasure to gab over the weekend (c:

Anonymous said...

三重房屋 , 三重賣屋 , 三重賣屋 , , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 三重房屋 , 三重賣屋 , 三重賣屋 , , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 三重房屋 , 三重賣屋 , 三重賣屋 , , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 三重房屋 , 三重賣屋 , 三重賣屋 , , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿

Anonymous said...

民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 花蓮民宿 , 花蓮民宿 , 花蓮民宿 , 花蓮民宿 , 花蓮民宿 , 花蓮民宿 , 花蓮民宿 , 花蓮民宿 , 花蓮民宿 , 花蓮民宿 , 花蓮民宿 , 花蓮民宿 , 花蓮民宿 , 徵信社 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 尋人 , 尋人 , 尋人 , 尋人 , 離婚 , 外遇 , 離婚 , 外遇 , 徵信社 , 外遇 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 尋人 , 離婚 , 尋人偵探 , 偵探 , 三重房屋 , 三重買屋 , 三重賣屋 , 花蓮民宿 , 花蓮民宿 ,

Anonymous said...

徵信 , 徵信 , 徵信 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 尋人 , 尋人 , 尋人 , 徵信 , 徵信 , 徵信 , 徵信 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 徵信 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 徵信 , 徵信 , 徵信 , 徵信 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 感情挽回

Anonymous said...

感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 徵信 , 徵信 , 徵信 , 徵信 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 徵信 , 徵信 , 徵信 , 徵信 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 徵信 , 徵信 , 徵信 , 徵信 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 徵信社 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計公司 , 網頁設計公司 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計

Anonymous said...

網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , SEO , SEO , SEO , SEO , SEO , SEO , SEO , SEO , SEO , SEO , SEO , SEO , SEO , SEO , SEO , SEO , SEO , SEO , SEO , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 網頁設計 , 廣告設計 , 廣告設計 , 廣告設計 , 廣告設計 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶

Anonymous said...

包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 包二奶 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦

Anonymous said...

抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 大陸抓姦 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚

Anonymous said...

離婚證人, 離婚證人 , 離婚證人 , 離婚證人 , 離婚證人 , 離婚證人 , 離婚證人 , 離婚證人 , 離婚證人 , 離婚證人 , 離婚證人 , 離婚證人 , 離婚證人 , 離婚證人 , 離婚證人 , 離婚證人 , 離婚證人 , 離婚證人 , 離婚證人 , 離婚協議 , 離婚協議 , 離婚協議 , 離婚協議 , 離婚協議 , 離婚協議 , 離婚協議 , 離婚協議 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 婚外情 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴

Anonymous said...

抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 抓猴 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 感情挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回

Anonymous said...

婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 婚姻挽回 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇 , 外遇 , 外遇 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 外遇問題 , 出軌 , 出軌 , 出軌 , 出軌 , 出軌 , 出軌 , 出軌 , 出軌

Anonymous said...

出軌 , 出軌 , 出軌出軌 , 出軌 , 出軌 , 出軌 , 出軌 , 出軌 , 出軌 , 出軌 , 監護權 , 監護權 , 監護權 , 監護權 , 監護權 , 監護權 , 監護權 , 監護權 , 監護權 , 監護權 , 監護權 , 監護權 , 監護權 , 監護權 , 監護權 , 偷腥 , 偷腥 , 偷腥 , 偷腥 , 偷腥 , 偷腥 , 偷腥 , 工商調查 , 工商調查 , 工商調查 , 工商調查 , 工商調查 , 工商調查 , 工商調查 , 工商調查 , 工商調查 , 工商調查 , 工商調查 , 工商調查 , 工商調查 , 工商調查 , 工商調查 , 工商調查 , 工商調查 , 工商調查 , 工商調查

Anonymous said...

工商調查 , 工商調查 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋711房仲網 , 中信房屋711房仲網 , 中信房屋711房仲網 , 中信房屋711房仲網 , 中信房屋711房仲網 , 中信房屋711房仲網 , 中信房屋711房仲網 , 中信房屋711房仲網 , 中信房屋711房仲網抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 外遇 , 外遇 , 外遇 , 外遇 , 外遇 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 外遇 , 外遇 , 外遇 , 偵探

Anonymous said...

工商調查 , 工商調查 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋 , 中信房屋711房仲網 , 中信房屋711房仲網 , 中信房屋711房仲網 , 中信房屋711房仲網 , 中信房屋711房仲網 , 中信房屋711房仲網 , 中信房屋711房仲網 , 中信房屋711房仲網 , 中信房屋711房仲網抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 抓姦 , 外遇 , 外遇 , 外遇 , 外遇 , 外遇 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 離婚 , 外遇 , 外遇 , 外遇 , 偵探

Anonymous said...

三重房屋 , 三重賣屋 , 三重賣屋 , , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 三重房屋 , 三重賣屋 , 三重賣屋 , , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 三重房屋 , 三重賣屋 , 三重賣屋 , , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 三重房屋 , 三重賣屋 , 三重賣屋 , , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿 , 民宿