Monday, March 21, 2011
First Full Day of Spring
Soon after arriving at work, I was looking out the door of the library when a Red-shafted Flicker landed in a small tree only about 10 feet away. Couldn't grab my camera quick enough, but then I spied this beautiful wasp in the door frame. I think it's a Crabronid (Family Crabronidae), but in my field guides there are so many similar-looking wasps - other Crabronids plus Vespids and Sphecids - that I gave up trying to identify its family, much less the species. No time to become a wasp expert tonight, so just enjoy the view. If it is a Crabronid, it's a harmless ground-dweller, sometimes called a digger wasp. The weather outside was still pretty harsh, so I have no idea how that wasp managed to get indoors.
An hour later, I was staring out a window while waiting for the copy machine. The structure on the gazebo had me thinking of "Due East" as a title for this post. Then a strange thing happened. The cows in the distance had been standing so perfectly still that I wondered if they were frozen, and another title flashed through my mind: "Not a speck of green in sight." Within seconds a truck entered the scene from the left and dropped nice green bales of alfalfa hay for the cows. For a moment, I thought I had caused this to happen. Was thinking about starting a new religion, but changed my mind. Anyway, the day turned out to be another one of alternating winter and spring conditions, punctuated by a fe discussions of when spring actually began. The equinox occurred at 4:21 PST Sunday, so today was the first full day of spring. That is, where I live. It's also the first day of fall for folks in the Southern Hemisphere. Missed what was reported to be the largest-appearing full moon in many years Saturday night due to stormy weather. Looks like a few more days of the same are in store.