Thursday, January 28, 2010

Wintering in the sun

Over at Bless Our Hearts (; I'll figure out the linking thing) Ms. Moon happened to mention a fine old gopher turtle she sees on her walks, enjoying the mild winter sun on his face, who moves so quickly to his hobbit house she doubts she'll be able to catch him with her camera. The slowly gliding alligator you see here is suffering a bit from the cold weather, and probably looking for a place to bask, like his distant relation at Bless Our Hearts.

I long for the spring and summer residents to return. I'll miss the crisp, bright air of winter in northeastern Florida, but I'll trade it to welcome the visitors of spring, like the summer tanager. He visits the water fountain with his rather more drab wife, though it is only fair to say that she would be beautiful in other company if she weren't being upstaged by his brilliant finery. She is a delicate green color, her breast feathers touched with yellow, and like her husband she has no interest in visiting our various feeders but does drop down from the canopy now and again for a drink or even (though we haven't been lucky enough to catch her in the act yet) a bath. In full summer we often see the roseate spoonbills. Last year there were several nesting pairs at Guana who seemed to move as a family group. Spoonbills sport gloriously vivid colors, ranging from snowiest white to a pink so deep it suggests vermillion. They're impressive when you see them feeding, which they do wading quietly at the shoreline, sifting water through their spoon-shaped beaks. They're quite amazing when seen in flight, bright colors illuminated by the sun.I hope you enjoy the reminder that though we must warm ourselves in winter, slowly and evenly the sun turns round to us again, bringing glorious days of another sort.

Here's one final note of genuine delight: Eat Here's resident photographer has located the missing photos that will enable the telling of some delicious tales, my dears, including those of the Cafe Alcazar, and our friend Claude and HIS friend, Julia Child. Stay tuned, and sleep well.

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