Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Visiting a bird sanctuary

Over the glorious long weekend, I had the pleasure of visiting Reifel Bird Sanctuary for the very first time. The scenery along the drive there was very quaint and relaxing just by itself; once we got to the sanctuary I felt like I was in paradise. There were birds to be seen even while standing in the parking lot. Greenery, water, beautiful views surrounded us on all sides and I was very eager to get on the path and enjoy a bird-watching + hiking adventure :) It's amazing how different the world feels when you're immersed in natural beauty, listening to a symphony of birdsong. 

At first it was hard to see any birds, even though their pretty voices were all around us. Besides ducks and geese, the first bird I saw was the lovely, elegant swallow. They were flying in all directions, basking in the sun :) After hearing the distinctive sound of a blackbird, I saw a big red-winged one for the first time - beautiful! I also saw a sweet, cute wren (like a puffy ball with wings!) and some other birds the names of which I cannot keep straight in my head :) There were several types of ducks, adorable baby geese, graceful blue herons, and last but not least, a Sandhill Crane. This extraordinary creature was having a meal right on the footpath so everyone got to see it very close up - it's huge! And so unlike any bird I've ever seen, I loved it! There were signs saying to be very careful around them as they can become aggressive when protecting their young or their territory; however, this glorious being was just peacefully snacking at the time. 

I absolutely loved this place from the second we got there, and will definitely be going back! We walked for over two hours but it felt very short and I would have been happy to stay and nap in the fresh air and beautiful surroundings...with the birds :) Their singing was incredible and quite soothing :) 

It would be nice if we had even more natural sanctuaries for all living creatures, including humans. Sometimes after a busy day in the city, I feel such a yearning to retreat into peaceful, lovely nature to rejuvenate and feel connected with life again. Somehow, being in nature makes me feel more like myself, more grounded, free, uplifted, and inspired :) Hooray for Mother Nature! And birds!

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