I didn't set my alarm this morning, so I slept in until 10. Even with over 10 hours of sleep, I still felt like sleeping longer, but I had too much I wanted to do and too much I needed to do to let myself. Still, it took a long time before I really got my act together.
Sometime vaguely around noon I took a turn around the back yard with Meg. My brown thrasher is back! My brown thrasher is back! <Phil does a little happy dance>
There had been some mumblings about it raining, but it was dry though a little cloudy. So after I had some lunch, I grabbed camera and hopped in the car to Kickapoo. The road to the part of the park south of the Interstate, which had been mysteriously gated off the last time I'd gotten down there while it was still snowy, was open like it should be, and I went to the area down by pond #6 and followed the trail that goes south almost beside the river for a good way, though not all the way to US 150. More signs of spring: lots of Spring Beauty (in varying shades of pink, but very little completely white), tons of Dutchman's Britches, a reasonable number of bees, one of the little butterflies that are light blue on the inside of their wings <Phil does another happy dance>, a larger showy white flower with yellow stamens that I should know the name of but can't remember, trillium in bud (but none open that I saw), redbud that looks like it's just about to pop into actual bloom (but it looks just like it did Thursday so I don't know how long it really will be). And there's this lovely tree that's covered with fairly small white flowers; I can't figure out what it is, but they're quite showy. There are several scattered around the park. Not many birds, though there was a tufted titmouse who was messing with my head. I was hearing a song I didn't recognize and I couldn't see any bird at all. Then the song changed to another, still unfamiliar. And I finally saw this tufted titmouse, but if he was the one singing, he was doing it without opening his beak. And then the song changed again, to the peter-peter-peter call that I recognize. I can't rule out there being more than one bird involved, but if so they arranged careful tag-team singing. I also had a brown creeper.
When I came back to the area where I'd parked, a young couple drove up with a pair of not-quite-full-grown labs, a black dog and a yellow bitch. They threw frisbees for the dogs, then took them to the pond and threw lures into the water which they fetched, and then had them chance a practice duck. I took some pictures of the dogs, and we struck up a conversation; they'd like to have the pictures, so as soon as I can get around to working with the pictures, I'll email them. They said they were interested in having me come to their place to do a photo shoot. I hope they still feel that way when they see the pictures I took for real -- a picture that looks good on the review on the camera often turns out not to be worth printing.
I wish I could include pictures with this entry, but until I can manage to make my workflow more efficient, I can't start fiddling with pictures in an entry at 9:00 when I need to get up at 5:30 tomorrow.