Although winter here feels like autumn to me now, complete with trees shedding their leaves, we have had a few sub-freezing nights here in San Antonio. Driving around the neighborhood, I see so many frozen little tender plants, not prepared for the slight frost of a Texas winter night.
Still, there are signs of life in the bird world, as we've had Carolina Wrens in the backyard each morning, teakettling their little lungs out. The Inca and White-winged Doves are still reporting for breakfast each morning, as my mom leaves them a nice mix of birdseed. Bluejays and Northern Mockingbirds are everywhere as well, having little skirmishes among the high branches of the live oaks and hackberries.
Raptors are everywhere too: Black Vultures have replaced the Turkey Vultures of earlier in the season. Each day when I leave work, there are four or five of them on the streetlights outside the building complex. The other day, I was walking out of a restaurant at lunchtime when a beautiful Sharp-shinned Hawk flew about ten feet above my head! And Red-tailed Hawks make regular appearances on the lightposts and fenceposts along the highway on the road to work.
I have been working as much overtime as I can lately, trying to save up money for when this job ends. I'm applying to jobs both here and back east, hoping to get something closer to AB in Pennsylvania. My temp job end date was moved from December 31 to January 31, so at least I'll have a little more time during which to work and save money. I'm trying to get something lined up for when it's over, but so far--nothing. Still, I'll keep trying.
Meanwhile, seeing those few birds has really made me hungry for the spring migration. My goal is to see a Golden-cheeked Warbler here in the only place they can be found, near Camp Bullis just to the northwest of here. I want to see one before I move on to the next chapter, ideally back up near/in PA with AB; I'm not really planning on being here much longer (or so I hope!).
I hope you're all having a wonderful pre-Christmas week. Merry Happy Hannukah Kwaanza Christmas Yule!