I have the holiday week off so I am hoping the weather does not keep me too tied down.
On Sunday at Noon, our KUOW plays Vinyl Cafe with Stuart McLean. This delightful show out of Canada features Canadian music and artists along with a short story that listeners send in. Stuart tells his own story every week about recurrant characters Dave and Morley. Dave owns the worlds smallest record store and the story revolves around friends, family and days of their lives. They are simple stories and when you get to know the characters you can almost "listen ahead" as to what is going to happen next. I was thrilled to see Stuart in person earlier this Fall up at Western Washington U in Bellingham.
Today it looked like there was a blue sky to the far north so I headed up to Fir Island to snoop around for swans and Snow Geese.
The reason we call those blue skies in the distance "sucker holes"???
By the time I got up to the Skagit Flats the wind was howling 40+ mph. The rain felt like ice. It gave me plenty of excuse to simply drive, park, to watch the fields and listen to the radio.
I stopped at one of the Department of Wildlife access areas. The Puget Sound waters appeared almost milky green and there were whitecaps everywhere.
I loved these little cat-tails. They were down in a low spot and the wind was not rattling them very much.
I watched a Great Blue Heron hunt in the grass. It came up empty billed, unlike last weeks rodent escapde.
As usual the Trumpter Swans were always far out in the fields well away from the roadside. I could not find any Snow Geese and figure they ware likely someplace sheltered from the wind.
I stopped into LaConnor for a cup of coffee. There were a few people about, but most of the shops were having a quiet weekend off.
As it was getting near Noon, I took my coffee to the Big Ditch access to listen to Vinyl Cafe. Todays Dave story was one about a misadventure of his youth involving trying to impress a girl and stealing a tree from someones yard.
I found some swans in the fields. I sometimes find Short-eared Owl here, but the ditches were free of any birds.
I discovered something new today. The WSU "talking field" program. I need to check this out. The Skagit is one of my favorite areas. This might be a great way to explore.
This is part of the organic dairy featured on this talking field spot. I hope I can find a listing for other Talking Fields in the area. The downfall of dairy in this county has been staggering. I will have to listen to this field again, but I think they said the county went from over 100 dairies in 1995 to now only ~35. That is a staggering loss of business.
On my way home I stopped by NOAH. This beautiful shelter is where I found my new kitty Ella Menohpea on Halloween.
They are nice people and I wanted to leave a little holiday donation for their good work. If you are in the area and looking for a new friend (coughcoughmary) I would certainly take a look. http://www.thenoahcenter.org