Saturday, December 13, 2008

12 Degrees

Aahh - today was a rare day. It is my Saturday off and it is "Second Saturday" at the Cincinnati Nature Center. Every month, on the second Saturday, CNC schedules a whole day of events - programs, exhibits, and of course, an 8:00am bird walk. I have been planning for this day all week. My alarm was set for 6 o'clock. I was going birding.

Until I woke up this morning, that is, and heard the weather report. "It's eighteen degrees and windy," said Cheerful Weather-lady. I snuggled deeper into my blankets and debated the wisdom of leaving such a warm place. It is a 45 minute drive from my house to CNC. If I am going to the bird walk, I have to start getting ready soon. Is this really what I want to do this morning? Perhaps I should sleep on it.

My thought processes were disturbed by a small, anxious whimper. Dog owners know that
sound. It's a certain whine, the tone of voice that says, "I'm not kidding, Mom. I have to go potty RIGHT NOW!" I got out of bed to let the dogs out. I looked at the back porch thermometer:

Twelve degrees. It is only 12 degrees outside. And dark. If I am going to make it to the bird walk, I have to start rushing around, putting on all my warmest clothes and finding my birding gear. Maybe I will stay home and watch the birds at the feeders. I looked out the windows.

Technically, I looked AT the windows, since looking through them was impossible. The windows were frosted over. That settles it - I am NOT going birding today. After all, it is only 12 degrees out there.

After messing around at home, filling my bird feeders and feeding my mealworm colony, I got up the courage to put on some clothes and head outside.

I spent most of the day traveling around shopping, with some random birding thrown in. I saw a female Purple Finch and a Pine Siskin at the feeders at CNC, but missed the Fox Sparrow and Red-tailed Hawk. I ran into three fellow birders, who wanted to know why I hadn't been at the early morning bird walk. (A bit like being caught at the mall by your boss when you have called in sick to work that day.) I saw a total of 5 American Kestrels along Clermont County country roads, but came up empty during a stop at Mehldahl Dam to look for the Peregrine Falcoln.

Maybe tomorrow will be a better day to bird.


NCmountainwoman said...

You made the right decision. There's a time and temperature for everything, and 12 degrees for birding ain't it.

Mary said...

All I would need to hear is "18 degrees and windy" and I would have pulled the covers over my head and put off birding for another day. Your windows are remarkable!

retriever farm said...

Glad to hear you still have some sanity. No one in their right mind would be up and out in that weather, of course I was out on my way to the office!!!

Mary C said...

Kathi - fess up -- what did you tell your fellow birders? ;o) Did they actually go on the bird walk? Imagine how many layers of clothing you would have had on. Were there any "special" birds to be seen at that time of day and that temp that would have made it worth it? Brrr!

Kyle said...

12 degrees?!? I don't think the thermometer hanging outside my back door even goes down that low!! Morning's like that I would have told the dog to go use the cat's litterbox and just pulled the covers back over my head. BRRRR!!

Susan Gets Native said...'re usually not a "fair-weather birder", dear friend. Why wuss out now?

Not that I blame you. 12 degrees, 18 all sounds sucky.

dAwN said...

love your frosty window pictures...