Birding in Delia’s backyard

Susan seems to think I have all these fabulous photos to share with you from our visit with Delia. Well… I don’t. I carried that darn camera with me everywhere and was distracted with laughing most of the time and didn’t get very many nice pics. But, there is this one from Delia’s backyard – isn’t it fabulous? As much as I love being near to the shore, I can easily imagine myself happy to have a view like this out my kitchen window. I’ve no idea what type of trees those are up on top of that mountain, but if they ever turn green or in the fall are colored with reds and yellows, and oranges – wow! Delia called that a ‘hill’ rather than a mountain, by the way, but to me used to the coast it all seemed pretty spectacular. Please click on the pic to enlarge!

It was really neat to see the places that Delia blogs about. It felt to me like she lives in the middle of nowhere, but that must come from my being too accustomed to traffic and noise and people. Made me wonder what in the world they do with themselves! But then I remembered when I first started reading Delia’s blog and she talked about building her own scope from scratch for birding, and then making an adapter for her camera for the scope she finally bought, and her posts about moon and starwatching, and all the time she spends birding in the marsh that’s in her backyard. Anyway… it seems like a nice life there in the ‘hills’ – even if there’s only one Dunkin Donuts within a hundred miles and you have to pump your own gas!

(Don’t ask – I’m sure Susan will embarass me with that story – even if she doesn’t have photos!)

So, we spent a couple hours ambling through the marsh, talking and laughing like old friends – which felt really nice – and doing the things that birders and naturalists like to do. Only we weren’t really serious about it, or didn’t bother trying to pretend to be serious. We just had fun in that easy way that near strangers can when they share a common interest. We scared up lots of ducks with our laughter, and thought of Lynne when we saw a TV, puzzled over some bloody feathers along the trail, spotted a stinker for Mary as it flew over the marsh, Susan and Delia chimped their way through a pile of canine scat – while I kept my fingers clean behind the camera! Good, clean fun… but for the picking through poop – come on girls! Yuck.

In the end, I came away feeling like a 10 year-old, jumping through mudpuddles with the silliness of it all. Who in their right mind drives all that way to show support for a friend, misses the main reason for going to begin with, and then is perfectly happy with a few hours of backyard birding and wet muddy feet before a long ride back home? (Click here for the story and opposite view of this pic.)

What I mean to say is that I’m so often amazed with the friendships that’ve developed as a result of this silly blogging we all do, yet furthering those friendships beyond just reading one another’s blogs feels like a very natural extension of the connections we’ve made here. I think to others who don’t ‘get it’, it must all seem pretty peculiar, yet we bloggers all carry around little bits of each other and one another’s lives, don’t we? Going out of our way a bit and meeting in ‘real life’ makes it feel almost like a homecoming of sorts. Or a 20 year class reunion… you remember these people, but you’re surprised with how your memory of them has changed since you last saw them (or read their most recent post.)


15 thoughts on “Birding in Delia’s backyard”

  1. Yes, blogging can have amazing effects on a life. I heard my first Julie Zickefoose NPR commentary just 2 years ago, quickly found her blog, and very quickly decided “what the heck?” and started my own blog. Blogging and exploring other blogs very quickly became a major and totally unanticipated part of my life. Who knew?

  2. What a backyard view! Indeed, this little blogiverse is so rich with very real and deep connections. Those who don’t get “it” have no clue what they are missing out on, do they? :c)

  3. Sounds like a wonderful trip!
    And such a nice confirmation of the friendships that miraculously form across the miles, through pictures and words.

    I think blogging reveals the intimacies that everyday life often glosses over. And, those who read our heartfelt thoughts may know us more genuinely than people we greet face to face.

    Delia’s world is lovely!

  4. Fun and memories are so much more important than photos. How wonderful to have such friends and share those great experiences that fill our hearts with memories.

    Thanks for sharing this great post.

  5. I hardly took any photos either! However, I’ll have my post up soon; Blogger was being a pain last night.

    Thank you for not mentioning the egg…

  6. Hi Laura –

    I’ve been enjoying your photos and thoughts and was wondering if you wanted to trade links.

    I do much of the posting on my newspaper’s nature blog, The Nature of Things ( We’re in Westchester, Putnam and Rockland counties up in NY.

    My email is mrisinit at lohud dot com.


  7. Diva Kitty: Looks fun, doesn’t it?

    Mojoman: It is something special and borders on addictive for lots of us, I think.

    Jayne: I do wonder if Delia can see how pretty it is… looking at it every day. Fresh eyes, you know.


    Nina: I think you’re probably right. Thanks for saying it so nicely, too.

    NCMountainWoman: Hi and thanks – glad you liked it. I wonder.. is there to be a blog in your future?


    Delia: Susan told it well.. I didn’t need to!

    Mike: Hi! Sure and thanks.

  8. I love the two literal perspectives I now have of the marsh, one from you and one from Susan. What a great trip you all seem to have had. Thanks for sharing.

  9. A grand adventure and outstanding coverage of a most interesting situation!

    We too lived by the shore for years and years and when we moved to the country it took 2 years to well appreciate that aspect, which now is wonderful!

  10. A delta, indeed. What were we thinking?
    Great action shot there, Laura. I’m in mid-jump (and mid-scream) and Delia looks like she is waving in an aircraft.

  11. This is a wonderful story, beautifully told and felt. Yes, who knew what bonds would form when we all started what seemed like a silly enterprise? My heart is full at the thought of you and Susan, converging from NJ and OH in PA to (try to) bear witness to Delia and Kat’s ceremony. But as we all know, the important stuff happens out in the marsh and mud. The last picture cracks me up!

    BTW The Chimp uses sticks to pull apart coyote poo. Tool-using. Sign of a more advanced evolutionary state. I’m just sayin’.

  12. Whatchoo sayin’, Julie?

    But hey.
    1.That poo was very dry and I thoroughly sanitized with the Outhouse Purell afterwards.

    2.And I am only a Junior Chimp. They don’t let me use tools yet.

    BTW, I was in full pout-mood as I drove back and passed the Marietta exit….you almost had an overnight visitor.

  13. You do such a great job painting additional thoughts to the pictures you post! I have no clue who you are but can very easily see what you’re about! Most of my friends think I am nuts for being so intrigued by nature (especially birds) but really they are the ones missing out!

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