I can say it out loud now. Spring. Spring. Spring! Indigenous plants are sprouting. I stepped outside my door to listen to the Lapland Longspurs trilling away. Male and female, doing the little mating flirtation. The fog was coming down, and I could tell that a nice drizzle was going to start shortly. I walked across the lawn, following the birdsong. A juvenile bald eagle, perched on the light pole next to Mom’s and Dad’s house, ruffled his feathers and for some unknown reason decided to fly to perch on my roof right above my door. Then he hopped-flew to the little shed 10 feet away. Well – talons up close are a bit frightening, so I decided to walk across the street to the beach, hoping that he would be gone in a few minutes. Low tide. Thinking of the red salmon soon to grace our waters. I turned back toward the driveway and barely ducked fast enough to evade the adult dive bombing the juvenile with talons extended. Criminy! I had to go from fence, to boat, ducking for safety each time that damn eagle would dive. About 20 feet from the door, I noticed that there was another adult eagle sitting between the little shed outside my door and Mom’s house. Just sitting there all eagle-eyed in the grass. Pitter patter goes my heart. Then another juvenile joined the fray. Now didn’t I feel just a little ridiculous making a beeline for my front door as if the gates of hell were opening behind me. Yes, ah spring.
We have been enjoying our beautiful February weather over the past week or so. Mom and Dad say that they have always done a lot of boating in February because the weather always offers up a couple of weeks of beautiful, flat calm days with brilliant sunshine.
This past week has also shown another finest of Unalaska, besides its February weather. It has been an action-packed showcase of the generousity of Unalaskans, from the Channel 8 auction (with their awesome and hilarious soap opera, Dutch Harbor 99692 ), to the Ballyhoo Lions bowling, spilling over to the Museum of the Aleutian’s Chocolate Extravaganza, and ending up on Sunday with the Preschool Ice Cream Social. Where else but Unalaska, could you wear yourself out donating money to great public ideas in action? And having fun doing it?
I also wrapped up my segment for the Unangan Program at the elementary school. My last week with the cutest little first graders you will ever see, was a breeze after my previous week with almost 30 second graders! Not that the second graders weren’t cute…..there were just soooooooooooo many of them. Keeps you on your toes when you are working with hot oil.
Suzi Golodoff now has five weeks with the students, teaching about our Aleutian feathered friends, and, last but not least – in fact, most importantly – Laresa Syverson will give 5 weeks of her afternoons in the pursuit of passing on Unangam tunuu (the Aleut language) to a generation younger than her!
Laresa and I decided to go for a walk on the spit yesterday. Imagine our surprise to come across a beach full – and I mean BEACH FULL – of geese. We actually went down there to see if the otters were still hanging out. Yes, they were, but I didn’t have a zoom lens with me. You can see them hanging out there in the distance. Laresa and I were thinking these geese would be really easy to get to the table. We contemplated a bola, a net, Laresa’s awesome arm – armed with a rock (ask the ptarmigan), but decided the geese were acting a little too friendly to just take them to dinner without giving them a chance to decline!