Robert (gurdonark) wrote,

looking up things and walking about

I got up early Sunday and drove to the Brockdale trailhead of Trinity Trail. The weather was pleasant, about 12.75 C., and the sky was pleasantly hazy. The horse/hike trail is about a 20 minute drive from our home. When I arrived, two men stood near their horse trailers and talked. I remember seeing one horse, grown but not huge, with a long, blonde-ish mane.

When I first arrived, I saw an eastern bluebird on a small, bare tree. I went to snap its picture, as it flitted from tree to fence to the top of a birdhouse to the top of a larger tree. Another bluebird also came into view, and I took its picture.

eastern bluebird contemplating

I also saw some sparrows, possibly Savannah sparrows, foraging on the ground.

I chose to walk toward Lake Lavon, rather than go south on the trail. The lake is not far from the trailhead, and I walked past prairie plants, juniper trees and cedar trees. When I neared the lake, the path turned and began to parallel the lake. A man stood in wading boot attire on the beach, roughly 20 meters away. He was watching a huge, planted surf pole. He turned to see who authored this invasion of his solitude. I wordlessly waved, and he wordlessly waved back.

I reached paved Brockdale Road, which leads back out of Brockdale Park. As I walked along the
roadway, I saw a host of sparrows on the ground on the right side of the road,feeding. I stopped to take pictures.

harris' sparrow, collin county, texas 2 23 2014

I used my cell phone to find a website about sparrows. I looked carefully for a picture of a similar sparrow, as I lacked familiarity with the species. I found the name for the species of sparrow--Harris's sparrow. I also saw a mockingbird, a yellow-rumped warbler, and another bird that may have been or may not have been a bobolink.

I drove back into town. The walk caused no perspiration. I decided to attend the 10:30 a.m. service at my church. I listened to Neil Sperry's gardening program while I drove. He did an advertisement about bees. He told one man to prune a magnolia tree on which the top had died from the drought. He told another woman how to shape an abellia.

The church service dwelt on a passage from First Corinthians about avoiding divisions. The opening hymn was "Holy, Holy, Holy". The invitational hymn was "How Great Thou Art". A handbell choir played.

I went to Weight Watchers in the early afternoon, and found, to my surprise, that I had gained
1.4 pounds. In Weight Watchers they refer to "my weight loss journey". My own "weight loss journey" always runs "lose 4, gain 1, gain 1, lose .5, gain 1, lose 4". Since my latest return to Weight Watchers, I have been active for 8 months. I lost a bit over 19 pounds. So my average is 2.375 pounds/month. Weight loss becomes slower as my weight reduces. I would like to lose another 9 pounds by year end, or .75 pounds/month. I believe this is an achievable goal.

After Weight Watchers, I stopped by a section of the Chisholm Trail to take a walk. Two 30something couples rode by me on bicycles, with word snippets indicating that they were having one of those contemporary grown-up pleasant inconsequential discussions that one would swear happens only on television. I saw a yellow-rumped warbler. They flit so regularly from branch to branch. I find them challenging to photograph. I did get one picture that I like.

Yellow-rumped warbler, Chisholm Trail, February 23, 2014

I saw over a dozen lesser scaup ducks swimming in Spring Creek. As I walked, a Cooper hawk flew by. I turned and followed it, trying to see where it landed in a nearby tree. As I looked for it, it suddenly launched an attack on a bird hidden in the shrubs closer to the ground. The bird, either a mockingbird or a perhaps a dark-eyed junco (based on its gray/white tail feathers) recovered, and flew off. The Cooper hawk flew after it. I did not see what happened. I believed that the bird, while vigorous, had been a bit slower in its flight than the hawk. I did not see the outcome, as they flew over a row of houses. I thought about how I root for the prey, even as I recognize that the predator also needs to eat.

I grabbed a sandwich at Whichwhich, and then went home. I took Beatrice for a walk. She said a rather indifferent hello to Winnie, a Boston Terrier, to a small furry terrier, and to another dog. This counted as a very social outing for this decidedly non-social dog.

I did some more paperwork in the early evening. I did get some things done this weekend, but I wish to do more in the coming days.

We ate chicken and watched Downton Abbey before calling it an evening.

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