Wednesday, December 16, 2009
December once again feels like December here on Roundtop. Late last week, the temperature plunged into January range, with a brutal north wind. Then the temperature rose into early November range and felt balmy. Today, all the drama is over, and the day is simply typical for December.
Overnight, clouds rolled in and brought snow showers that gathered flakes along one side of my driveway but not the other. In December, it’s not uncommon for this to happen almost every night.
I, too, feel as though I am returning to normal after the drama of the weekend just past. Between the pleasure of the long trip to New Hampshire and the terror of frozen ice and a highway littered with accidents, normal feels pretty good right now.
In my case, normal could also be a euphemism for nothing much is happening right now. And certainly nothing unusual is going on. The closest thing to unusual was a quickly glimpse of an immature yellow-bellied sapsucker and that only barely qualifies as unusual. An immature sapsucker in December almost qualifies as a birding cliché. It’s true that I don’t find sapsuckers every year in December, but when I do find them, they are always immature birds. They hang around, eating my suet, until the first really harsh snowstorm arrives. Then they disappear. That's normal, too.