Awakening a Keen Observer

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Like birds to roost

Last night around dusk I took Chili Pepper, our daughters dog, out for an even strole. I didn't expect it to last long so I just put on a sweater an not a coat. It was in the 30's and yet without the wind it wasn't too cold. As Chili walked around in the former pumpkin patch I wasn't really 'seeing' what was around me...
I was thinking about everything that had gone on-- and that I still have to do --- and concerns I have for some folks I know---and I was feeling overwhelmed.
Then I heard this noise.
It was familiar
but it didn't exactly register what it was, so I looked around.

And there I stood in the midst of a flock of birds who were heading for roost. The 1/2 dusky light kept me from seeing any color on the birds and yet there was a lighteness to their breast color. I also heard a chirp or two. They were robins. A flock of them heading for roost. And they kept coming and coming and coming.

When my father, Dr. Maurice Giltz, did his research on the Red-winged Blackbirds we would watch a lot of the birds coming into roost. There millions would gather... He taught me how to look at a group of birds in the sky and estimate how many were in that one place and then multiply that number by the time that they were coming in. There was a constant stream of brids, flying lower than the cedars, flying off to the trees just to the south of our property.
And they kept coming....coming...

I just stood there. You could hear their wings beating. Every once in a while one of them would flutter around like a wing was off-sides. They made me smile. They gave me a gentle peace. They were a reminder of my father and his work with birds. It changed things. The way I felt about myself and the world around me.

Friend, May you find in a day when things are quite busy for you--- some reminder of the world moving on beyond your own situation and may that sense of being part of a larger joy that fills your life to overflowing.

God Abide
Bobbie Giltz McGarey


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