Pipi’s Pasture: Reflections on the wind and the problems it causes
This morning I watched a male robin as he sat perched on a branch of the crab apple tree that’s just outside the dining room windows. I have seen the robin there before so I’m pretty sure that he and his mate have a nest nearby.
Birds fluff out their feathers when it’s cold or stormy, and perhaps because of the wind, this robin had fluffed out his feathers, too, and his body was more round than usual.
As I watched, the robin began preening himself. His beak worked on his unusually red breast, and then he craned his head to reach his wings and neck. I’ve never really understood why birds go through this ritual, but he proceeded to work with his beak, while the wind tried to knock him off the branch. A couple of small feathers stuck out from one side of his body.
At first, the robin’s head was pointed toward the windows, but after awhile — perhaps to try to avoid the wind — he turned so that his tail was pointed in my direction. Then he turned around again.
I wondered if the robin could see me sitting at the table inside the house. If so, perhaps he would have liked to ask, “What the heck is up with this wind?” I wondered the same thing.
There’s been a lot of wind so far this spring — that’s for sure — and some of it has been pretty wild, too. I don’t know why the wind has been blowing so much, but I can say that the wind …
• has left the front and back lawns littered with limbs and branches — and some not so small either.
• has blown autumn leaves and even two empty flower pots from under the front porch.
• often has the barn cats seeking shelter, and the cows don’t seem to like the wind whistling between their ears.
• can wreck a new hairdo (fresh from the salon) in just a matter of minutes.
• blows from one direction, then from another, and sometimes seems to blow from several directions at the same time.
• can make it almost impossible to open a car door.
• makes driving a challenge.
• blows hay leaves and dust into my eyes during feeding time at the corral, made even worse when a cow shakes a clump of hay near my face.
• can help dry clothes hung out on the clothesline — if they stay on the clothesline.
• can roll a round bale.
• carries tumbleweeds over ridiculously high fences, across the highway, under cars, across the corral and lots of other places, and piles them up in corners and in front of gates — wherever they can get caught up — making a mess to be cleaned up.
• has helped melt off the most recent snowfall, but now it is starting to dry things out.
• tends to make me nervous—maybe the robin, too.
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