“Squirrel stalking” turned into a delightful surprise this past Saturday.
After breakfast, the Iceman had restocked all his feeders with various birdie delights. When he’s done, he always throws a few large handfuls of the Blue Jay’s peanuts on the ground. I’m convinced the squirrels are as excited that he feeds the birds as the birds are. A few minutes later, the first squirrel ventured into the yard to sample the delights. He was pretty cute and seemed content to stay so I quietly slipped into the yard to see what I could capture. You know, Squirrel Stalking.
While I’m quiet enough, stealth is probably not my super power, so it was surprising he let me get as close as he did. He seemed far more interested in his peanut than he was in me. As I made an arc around him taking shots from various angles, I wound up fairly close to our deck.
That’s when I heard it.
The unmistakable call of The Oriole.
Right behind me.
The Oriole feeder is mounted to the side of our deck. We only saw him once last year, but we’ve seen him several times this year, but never when I had my camera. Now, here I am, my back to the deck, camera in hand. Could it be?
I slowly turned around and there he was! I raised my camera and he continued enjoying his grape jelly. I was so close to him that my camera/lens combination could not focus. I still can’t believe my luck! I took a quiet step back and still no focus. I was afraid to move and startle him but equally afraid to miss the shot. Instead of moving again, I leaned back until he snapped into focus! I was able to get off a few shots before he darted away. The entire experience was over in seconds. It made me happy the rest of the day. Still does.
Later, he came back and posed a few more times! What a day!
Each morning the tree line behind our yard is full of chatter, chirps and calls, the sounds of the birds and their babies thriving. I have found joy and peace in these small creatures that I never expected to find.
“Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.”— Jesus Christ, Matthew 6:29 (NIV)
When Jesus preached these words, he was speaking of the flowers of the field, but they still fill my heart when I see these photos.