The female half of the table (minus Laura, who hadn't gotten there yet, and minus me who's taking the picture)--L to R: Susan Gets Native, Birdchick, Beth the Lurker who owned up to her lurkiness AND positively ID'd lifer Lynne as Hasty Brook, said Lynne of Hasty Brook, and KatDoc of Katdoc's World (all links in the sidebar).
The male half of the table, joined by Birdchick who's everywhere that birders are!--L to R: John of DC Birding Blog, Birdchick, and Jay Davis of Birdjam.
Well, my whirlwind trip to Cape May included getting lost on the way there AND on the way back, but I made it there and back again in time to have my breakfast with The Kid. More on that later; first, the birdy roundup.
I should go ahead and confess that I got ZERO pictures of birds, even though I did end up with two lifers: a black-crowned night heron (spotted by KatDoc) and a lesser yellowlegs (spotted by me, and confirmed by the Hawkwatch Platform person). Both were too far away to get decent pix of.
I did get some pictures of these lifers, however:
Lynne, doing a Lifebird Wiggle (TM BOTB) after seeing her first black vulture:Kathi, rolling up her Ohio State sleeves and preparing for what would turn out to be a Penn State victory--sorry, KatDoc!:and John from DC Birding Blog! (not John Riutta, who didn't attend--my bad)Sweet sweet birders, all of them!
I also saw a life reptile, a black/rat/something snake that no one could ID with any certainty:He was very zig-zaggy: Here are Laura from Somewhere in NJ, Jay, and Susan outside the Grand Hotel:and lest you think I only got pictures of others, here's one that someone took of me and a certain nerdy Birdchick:Wow!
So--I made it back Saturday night/Sunday morning, in the rain and the fog, getting in at about 1:30 a.m. On Sunday, I had breakfast with Em (whose pic doesn't go on the blog or it would be mobbed by her fans). We had a great time, and she thoroughly approved of my new digs and my new wheels. It was, however, a bittersweet experience for me; I loved seeing her and talking with her about how her life is going, but I was reminded of how much my life has changed in just a few short months. My sense of loss was palpable. Still, she told me I'd always be her "other mother," and it felt good to know I'd see again in her just a few weeks (Thanksgiving). And, ever the wise one, she told me that life just goes like it goes, and we can't change things once they've happened. That's one smart kid.