Tuesday, November 12, 2013

For the Birds - Tues., Nov. 12

Not working for four days in a row has given me new energy. Three days in a row, I have been walking. Today, I revisited Mitchell Lake Audubon Wetlands a few minutes from our RV park for a 5K (3.1 mi) walk.

I had a late start to my day because I didn't go to bed until late, then the cats woke me up at 4:00 a.m. Long story short, I finally slept until 1:00 p.m. The Audubon wetlands close at 4:00 p.m. I hustled over there by 2:30 p.m. and I had 1-1/2 hours to walk, take photos and leave.

Each time I go to the wetlands, I strive to find different birds, i.e., ones that might be passing through or ones I haven't seen before. Today, I felt lucky to see two new birds for my list: the Northern shrike and the ruddy duck.

A definite cold front is passing through south central Texas. The wind was chilly, but it was a sunny day. I had on a T-shirt, fleece sweater and jeans. The temperature was wonderful for walking. Tonight, however, the temperature is supposed to drop to 34 degrees and there will be a wind chill making it feel even colder. The propane furnace will be running tonight!

Anyway, back to the walk. I enjoy walking in nature so much. The more I do it, the more content I am in my life. Beautiful and interesting scenes keep me going back.

Mitchell Lake Audubon's "office" and gift store.
Take a close look at the bird house below. Does it remind you of the office building above? Pretty cool bird house.
Audubon bird house.
A small bit of fall color: seed pods.
Looks like an invasion of UFOs.
Bird blind
Bird Pond.
Northern shrike - note the hooked upper beak.
Mourning dove.
Least grebe.
I want to hang out here!
American pelicans.
Northern shoveler
American avocet
Great egrets
As I walked (or ran) along, flurries of fritillaries flew up from the bushes beside the trail. In the photo below, I found four fritillaries, one open and three closed. Can you see them?

American avocet eating.
Ruddy ducks - I've never seen these before.
Northern shrike.
Because I love taking photos, I knew 1-1/2 hours wouldn't be enough for my 3.1 mile walk in order to make it back to my car by closing time. Every time I stopped to take photos, I ran for a couple of minutes to make up time. If you know how much I hate running, you will then know that I love taking photos that much more.

I made it back to my car at 3:59 p.m. At home, I had checked the location and time of "Gravity 3D." It started at 4:30 p.m. and I knew I could make it there in time. I hopped in the car and had freeway all the way to the theater. Just before I got out of the car, I was going to grab my credit card so I wouldn't have to fish for it at the ticket window. Epic fail. I forgot to put my credit card or cash in my fanny pack before I went walking. So, no movie today.

Tomorrow, I plan to walk in the morning, see my hairdresser at 1:00 p.m., and meet Bob to set up an account at a Texas credit union. U.S. Bank, where we have banked for years, is not in Texas.

Update: Jim and Peri whose 5th wheel was totaled by the flooding in San Marcos, Texas, now have a new-to-them 5th wheel and are all moved in. That was really quick. They found a used 5th wheel (in almost new condition) in Marble Falls, Texas. Congratulations, Peri and Jim!

Travel Bug out.