Spring Fever on Hold

I don’t think I’ve ever been so happy to see Red-Winged Blackbirds arrive at the Portage and start singing. It’s likely an intense desire to embrace any sense of Normal.

All these photos are from a quick trip to the Chicago Portage last Sunday morning, after the clocks were set ahead. There were not a lot of birds, but I managed to capture a few.

I’m happy to see the Robins returning too. The anticipation of spring is palpable. Now, if I can just get over the time change. It’s hard to get up in the morning, in the dark. Even harder perhaps knowing that nearly everything has been put on hold for voluntary, and increasingly involuntary, “self-distancing.”

After a fairly well-attended choir rehearsal on Wednesday, we received notice yesterday that the temple will be closed for the next four weeks, which totally puts on hold our entire schedule. We were to sing on Sunday and prepare for our special Choir Sunday on the 29th, but that’s not going to happen. No rehearsal, no services. We will stay tuned, but I know without rehearsal, it will be harder to hold those notes when we resume.

I managed to capture this Rusty Blackbird flying in with the Red-Wingeds, likely on his way north.

Even European Starlings are returning. They used to be present year-round but in the last few years I’ve missed their presence in the dead of winter.

There are always Downy Woodpeckers, though I might not always see them.

Same goes for the Black-capped Chickadees. It was chilly and windy but the days are getting longer and the birds have their work ahead of them.

Flyovers included a singular Ring-Billed Gull and One American Crow. I suppose Crows are a reminder of what happens if you don’t “self-distance”, as in the spread of West Nile Virus.

On the trail that runs behind the opening in the fence and runs parallel to the Des Plaines River, I witnessed a flurry of White-Breasted Nuthatch activity with what appeared to be one male and two females.

I missed any opportunity to snatch the last Super Moon because it was pouring rain on Monday night, but here’s a glimpse of what it looked like back home after swimming on Tuesday.

One more of this buff blackbird.

The extra time to lay low has given me an absurd sense of precarious calm, in that, I suppose, it takes a little pressure off the time crunch that normally accompanies my daily routine, even if it adds a new, rapidly-changing stress. Suddenly all the solo activities that I squeeze into tiny time fragments are clamoring for attention. Among them are playing more music, processing more pictures and writing more blog posts… There’s a desire to commence spring cleanup too. The challenge will be to stay awake. If I’m at home and sitting on the futon with my laptop, naptime is a real threat.

I hope for your wellness and safety, wherever you are. As much as we must distance ourselves physically, we need to come together in spirit all the more.

18 thoughts on “Spring Fever on Hold

  1. I really appreciated your post, Lisa… birds, woods, sky, moon, music and spirit wishing all shall be well.
    Linda

      • Sorry about that, Lisa. I’ve had some computer issues. I think it’s straightened out now.

    • Definitely, all around. Although I will be singing with my Diamond Dove, Dudlee, who demands a response from me, and singing along with Peter Mayer in the car, it’s nowhere near the same. There was a wonderful video posted, of people in Sienna opening their windows and singing out into the empty streets. I wish that were possible here…!

  2. Lovely post, Lisa. Glad you got the photo of the Super Moon. I recently learned that this Super Moon is called the Full Worm Moon referencing the ground beginning to soften enough for earthworm casts to reappear inviting robins to feed. I thought that was a sweet image of Spring. It is also called the Crow Moon (thought you’d like that!). I heard my first Black-capped Chickadee and Northern Mockingbird singing two weeks ago, such a nice hint of Spring indeed. Keep on singing in whatever capacity you can! Take good care and be well.

  3. Stay safe. I’ve never heard of naps as being bad for your health, so if that’s your only vice I think you can indulge here and there.
    Nice to see all the robins, they just came back here recently but I was wondering if something was up. I pass large patches of winterberry going to and from work and this is the first year I’ve seen berries still on the bushes after new year’s, and I’ve been concerned. I think it’s been either robins or cedar waxwings who clean them out.

    • I concur there have been a few leftover berries here and there – I am at a loss to explain it, maybe just that the flock was feasting somewhere else when they were at their peak.
      Perhaps the weirdest part of all this is it feels like we’re making it up as we go along…finding ways to cope. Funny about sleep – I woke up this morning as if nothing had happened, and had to remind myself of “Whoa – Not Normal Now.” Take care!

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