Saturday, January 22, 2011

A Shrike of Good Fortune

An intensive morning of pirating the lakeshore and the wastewater left me pretty beat. It involved floundering through waist-deep snowdrifts, marching into twenty-five mile-per-hour headwinds, and getting my face bitterly washed in snow under orders of a cruel, maniacal tyrant. Granted, the expedition had its high points--not one, but two Hot-N-Readies, as well as a couple shivering snipes, three Green-wingers, and a Merlin.

Sadly, none of these were SWSA birds. The Lautenbachs and I, however, founded a new sport: pier-scrambling.

So, when I got back to my dorm, I was wet and in no mood for running. After I'd dried out a bit, however, I began to feel restless (and perhaps a tad guilty about eating half a pizza), so I slid into my tights and fivefingers and set out on a journey.

Certain people had mislead me into believing that fivefingers were "warm" for running through snow. False. My feet froze.

But it was worth it! For, as I was sprinting through eight inches of powder on the far side of campus, I looked up and saw...a SHRIKE perched on a tree in the middle of a meadow that I've always thought seemed conducive to shrike-seeing. And not only that, I saw my first American Tree Sparrows as a Sweaty Sanderling.

First order of business upon arriving back at the dorm was toasting in front of the fireplace for a few minutes. Then, when I stripped to take a shower (I promise, it won't get any more graphic), I was mildly surprised to find rivulets of blood streaming down my ankles. Shoot, I should have known better than to run through crusty snow in shoes that aren't really shoes!

Merely a flesh wound.

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