A Year On Clear Lake-Nov 14, 2012

Sunset on the lake, November 14, 2012.

An interesting phenomenon occurs with each sunrise and sunset. As the sun begins its morning rise  all manner of birds take to the skies. They fly west, southwest across the lake, not in groups like migrating geese, but seemingly individually, a steady stream, scattered across the sky.  A few buck the flow, flying eastward, but the majority head  west. Then, in the evening as the sun begins to fade, the birds return from their day’s journey.

This daily ritual is noticeable, and it puzzled me for years. Where were they going and why?

Finally, I had occasion to ask one of the park ranger at Armand Bayou, a nearby nature preserve. The answer was simple – the birds wake and get on with their day’s work. They leave their resting place and go out into their territory to find food, mate, etc. In the evening with the day’s work done, they return home to rest. It makes sense.

We complain about “work”- about  having to get up and go to the office; but work it is a natural occurrence. If we weren’t heading to the office, we would be heading out to forage for food, till the land, or hunt and fish. So maybe the office isn’t such a bad thing – at least it’s air conditioned and heated. Picking through the produce aisle at the local grocery store is a lot easier than picking through spent berry vines. Work, no matter what form it comes in, is part of living.

One advantage the birds have, though – no traffic jams. We need to work on that.