Those who really know me, know I’m somewhat of a bird geek. I grew up in the country, our TV got 2 1/2 channels, and our phone service was so geared to rural living that we shared a ‘party line.’ So the out-of-doors was where it was at. And boy was it! Birds were radical, I soon found, and became fairly adept at identifying hawks and doves, towhees and waxwings, at a young age.
My father gave me binoculars before I was five years old and I think my first book was The Sunset Magazine-issue ‘Introduction to Western Birds.’ Owls, eagles and egrets—I found all of them wondrous and inspiring. When college got confusing, I switched my major so I could work summers for the Predatory Bird Research Group, dabbling in what it meant to be a field biologist.
I thought that’s what I’d do after college, applying for a coveted internship at The Point Reyes Bird Observatory, getting accepted only after my life choices found me pointing my compass toward writing, and Colorado, and a lot of other places on the map since then. Nonetheless, once a bird lover, always a bird lover: It’s no accident I got married at a local bird sanctuarylast year.
So I was both pleased and sorry — I’ll be traveling elsewhere this weekend so will miss it— to hear that The Point Reyes Birding Festival is starting this Friday, April 26 and running through the weekend. The festival features birding trips, informative talks and a wine and dessert reception to compare notes with your fellow birders. Even if your interest in birds is cursory, you really should go if you’re in the area. Point Reyes is truly one of the most beautiful and diverse places in the world. And what better way is there to learn about the avian world than from the host of master birds and ornithologists who will be on hand?
Point Reyes Birding & Nature Festival April 26-28
Environmental Action Committee of West Marin
P.O. Box 609
Point Reyes Station, CA 94956