It was really, really nice to spend the whole day today with Sonia. As I only biked 12 miles around town, she was able to stand/walk by my side for most of the day. Rather than me write second-hand about show she felt about our day, I am going to throw the computer her way for her to tell you about it.
[Enter Queen Sonia - trumpets sound!]
Hey all! Let me start by saying that I have loved the last week that I've been able to spend with Dorian. I was getting to a place where the distance was really weighing on me, so having the ability to drive up and see him to spend a significant amount of time together has been fantastic. I'm very happy.
Is it just me, or does it seems like my visits always correspond with some great search for a really difficult to find bird? Then again, I guess at this stage in Dorian's year, every bird is going to be like this. The rail hunt has been a huge challenge. We have essentially spent 3 days scouring over miles of marsh land in hopes of finding a small black nocturnal bird that has decided to become a mute during our search. Ugh. That said, I have really enjoyed the search. While I'm not an expert birder, the treasure hunting aspect of this type of birding is really fun for me. As Dorian mentioned above, I think I did have a very brief encounter with the Black rail today. I immediately felt a rush of excitement as I called Dorian to my side, only to have my heart sink as it retreated back into the reeds by the time he reached me. You have no idea how badly I wish Dorian and I had switched spots. I spent the rest of the day obsessing about finding this bird again. While Dorian was understandably feeling defeated, I tried to keep his spirits up and hopes alive in finding this bird. We have one more crack at it tomorrow morning and I want this bird to show more than anything I've wanted in a long time. Please say your prayers tonight!
I thought I'd also take a brief moment to talk about the amount of energy this all takes. Seriously, I'm exhausted. We've been waking up at 5am every day, birding hard all day long and crashing hard at night. And I haven't had to ride a bike as my transportation! I have such an incredible admiration for what Dorian does day in and day out. Even writing these short paragraphs are a challenge as I am physically and mentally exhausted. I challenge you all to take one day where you would bird by a car and use a bike instead. At the end of that day, sit down an write about it. Then imagine doing this 365 days in a row. You guys, what he is doing is so incredibly challenging. These small glimpses into his life have been so good for me.
Here is a photo of the Ross's goose from 2 days ago! I finally found the time to get the photo sorted out this evening.