Tag Archive: hummingbirds


“Anything Denny Crane  can do, I can do backwards and while wearing high heels”.    —James Spader as Alan Shore`~~Boston Legal

I don’t know if any of y’all have ever had the pleasure of being a “host” to any hummingbirds, but they just happen to be in the area right now. In a previous life I was living on the coast in the Northwest.  My property was terraced with the driveway heading about 800 feet up on the north side of a mountain at the end of a small road.  About mid-way up, there was a “crick” with about a trillion fuchsia plants along it.  It was quite a beautiful spot really, if not a bit inconvenient when coming and going.  One of the results of this landscape was being blessed with about a billion or so hummingbirds……I realize I’m throwing around some pretty big numbers here, but our government has been pretty successful with that lately, so I thought I’d give it a whirl…….anybird, my point being: I never had to do anything to bring ‘em to the neighborhood, or actively attempt to attract their attention.

Until now.  Having scored a bargain on a pair of feeders at our local trading village a while back and with all of this free time on my hands, I thought how nice it would be to have some of the little hummers buzzing around the place.  I got said feeders hung in strategic locations for my viewing pleasure and what I consider to be a decent comfort zone for ‘em.  And there they sat.  I really didn’t expect to have visitors immediately, and after reading up on the “web” about “do’s and don’ts” I was reasonably sure that all I had left to do was wait.  So I did.  And then I started to wonder about what things I could do to send out the message that there was an open bar at this address.

One thing I do not have around here is flowers.  One blooming Magnolia and some large Oak trees  is all I have to offer, and I’m thinking they probably are attracted to a bit more color.  My dilemma now is that I don’t care to plant any color in my yard since I’m doing well to just “green up” the lawn after a bad winter.  So I went to the neighborhood discount-craft-supply-store and bought some really bright fake flowers and placed them in what I thought to be attractive spots for the little travelers to spy from “on high”.  And I waited.  Day after day.  Faithfully cleaning the reservoirs and replacing the feed for the little buggers every few days, all the while never losing hope.  Each day I gave my husband the negative report, which he acknowledged  with a somewhat amused (if not relieved) comment, since this project of mine was also keeping me out of his hair for a while……I must give him credit for getting them hung for me, though.  He’s really quite supportive ( forgive me the pun, please ).

Not one to be discouraged, I mentally crossed of each day as it passed without the whir and chirp of the little tourists.  Thirty-five days, to be exact.  I was determined that if I had to keep up this routine until next winter, so be it:  after all—this is a low-budget undertaking, and I know they are “out there”; but I still questioned whether or not I was on their map.  At long last, I was rewarded!  A few boys and a couple of little girls showed up hungry as hell.  YAY!!! It’s often the littlest things that bring the greatest pleasure, ¿No?   They zip in and out of both front and back yards as they try to establish themselves as regulars at the bar and claim their stools, as it were.  They’ve been drinking “on the house” for several days now.

Seeing them reminded me of a poem I wrote several years ago that I thought appropriately expressed my pleasure in observing these little creatures, although it was written about the “Calliope” (pronounced: kahl-lie-oh-pee), a species of hummingbird that doesn’t make it to this part of the country.  These hummers are about the size of a bumble-bee, and fierce enough to scare away even the “Steller’s Jays” that frequently bullied the many other “regular” birds away from our seed feeders.  I felt quite privileged that a pair of ’em decided to start a family in a bush right outside my kitchen window, and I decided some of you might enjoy my little tribute and possibly be inspired to tackle a similar project.  Maybe take advantage of some of the wonders of Mother Nature that are still available to us……..

CALLIOPE

Dainty little birds a-humming

Sweetest nectar you come bumming,

As I spy from kitchen window

Nature’s secrets you may show.

Diving, dipping in a dance

Inviting others to romance,

You seem to live with so much glee

While seeking mate for Springtime spree.

Busy little birds a-humming

I smile and watch as you come bumming

The tiniest twigs to build your nest,

You toil so hard to ‘chieve your quest.

With passing time you reappear–

Suppressing urge to let a cheer,

I see in you a new-found greed

Two baby mouths you’ve now to feed.

Happy little birds a-humming

I know the day will soon be coming

You all will have the need to go.

I’d like to think you somehow know

The hours of fun you’ve brought this house—

At times I’ve sat here like that mouse,

While hoping for the chance to see

A bird who’s called “Calliope”.

Precious little birds a-humming

I hope that someday you’ll be coming

Back to make your home next year,

Your whirring wings I’ll wait to hear.

For if my presence you should bless

I’d gladly have you as my guest:

The food and housing are for free

To birds just bigger than a bee.

©

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Routine

”….I don’t want to rob banks for the rest of my life.” —— Billy Bob Thornton~~Bandits

Routine……….now there’s a good concept, and in truth it’s not all that far removed from normal.  If you are unable to achieve “normal”, then routine could indeed be something to strive for.  You’re thinking you have a plan that can carry you through the day, and that you are probably in pretty good shape—and this may be the case, as long as something doesn’t happen to upset it.   You can be perking right along enjoying your usual life and not even realize what a great job you are doing on your daily “routine”, when WHAM somebody or something comes along and throws a monkey-wrench into your system and brings everything to a screeching halt.

It doesn’t matter that you  have been just as happy as that proverbial clam and minding your own business, because the beings that exercise the real power over these activities have very little shame.  “They” show no remorse, and even less compassion when it comes to the people who are unwittingly pursuing what (to most) would be thought of as a routine, possibly uneventful day.

If you ask me, the gods (or demons, as the case may be) of “normal” and “routine” apparently relish conspiring to disrupt the very acts for which they are responsible.  They might be feeling taken for granted or like they’re being ignored or something, but it’s as if the interruption is their means of reminding you just how very good you do indeed, have it.  Some of us recover from these interruptions more easily than others and are able to comfortably slide back into our happy little routines without missing more than a beat or two, however there are those of us who find it extremely difficult to get things back on an even keel.  In fact, sometimes it ends up being necessary to complete the circle in order to get there.

I firmly believe that there are those who not only take some kind of perverse pleasure in this inconvenience, but also feel the need to spread the misery around and foist their woes upon any innocent bystanders who are close at hand.  Having things turned upside down simply seems to be a way of life for some people.  It is as if these types of people most likely wouldn’t know what to do with a “routine” day if they had one, much less understand what an envied position they  truly occupy.  Having things go too smoothly can put some so far out of their comfort zone that they are absolutely compelled to foul things up as quickly as possible in order to get back to their own version of life as they know it, wreaking havoc on anything that gets in their way while they obliviously go about their madness……..and THAT is their routine!

As for me, I get up early, pour some coffee, and water the yard I’ve been trying to revive before the day gets too hot.  Then I decide what I want or ought to do.  Sound boring, does it?  I guess it could be considered to be so, but since I really don’t have any choice in the matter right now…….I prefer to think of it as more like doing “stand-up”, and make what I can out of it.

It looks like there must be a hummingbird convention in town, and boy–are they a tough crowd to please…….A bunch of heavy drinkers, those hummers.  There are a few regulars–Englebert, Dinger, Afewbars, and Vee–and they all seem to think it’s okay to invite any number of friends to this watering-hole.  A veritable Open House Party, as it were.   “The more, the merrier” I guess.  It’s looking like I ought to add to my regular supply if this keeps up……..I’d probably better put out  a couple-a more wells for the greedy little bastards if I expect to keep the peace.  I wonder how this’ll look on my resume when the docs finally set me free?  Probably better than robbing banks would…………

Yup–all things considered,I kinda like my routine…..after all, somebody‘s gotta do it !!    ;]