Thursday, June 3, 2010

HUMMER BUMMER

I'm dismayed at myself to see it has been a week since my last post. I have no good excuse except to say between the long holiday weekend, spending time with family, cookouts and photo ambles, an extra day off for Myladylove on Tuesday, columns to get out, plus appointments to doctors, the dentist and optometrist—not to mention yard chores and shopping and all the rest of the drattedly necessary time-consuming stuff which eats up so much of your life—I haven't had much opportunity to daydream, laze about with a good book, go fishing…or blog.

Toward that end—making a pix for a blog post—I did spend a bit of time on the deck this morning in my favorite rocking chair, ostensibly attempting to photograph the ruby-throated hummingbirds busily working the nearby nectar feeders. However, capturing good hummer images proved pretty much a bust because I'm seriously under-lensed for the situation at hand. Plus the feeders were in deep shade during the time, making for low light and the need to crank up the ISO beyond what I consider the optimum range for quality images.

Not that I much like feeder shots, anyway. My ideal goal was photos of these tiny feathered jewels in a more natural setting—hovering in midair or perched on a handy hackberry twig. The problem with successfully managing this latter objective is that you have to pay attention, keeping your eyes and mind focused, always watching and looking among the interlaced branches overhead for movement, a glimmer of iridescent green…and, of course, being ready to get the shot before the hummingbird zips away. In other words, you have to be keenly alert and primed for quick action.

That, I admit, was the real stumbling block for me on this particular day—the lack of ability to muster any prolonged stretch of paying attention. I'd settle down and hunker in, trying to keep a watchful eye in the foliage for hummer activity…but moments later find myself gazing at the river, my mind floating about like a loose fishing bobber. Then I'd look around just as one of the bright little birds, having sipped its fill, zoomed away.

With luck, this case of galloping ennui and muddled brain-function will be cured by a good night's sleep.

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12 comments:

Gail said...

HI GRIZZ-

For all your stammering and justifications that picture of the beautiful humming bird while feeding is lovely. :-)

Sounds like you had a busy weekend and more......me too, been to places I'd wish I didn't need to go - seen things I wished I hadn't - such is life.
I am glad you had some time in your favorite chair and that your river distracted you by its natural demands.
Love to you
Gail'
peace.....

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

Gail…

Busy, yes, and tiring, but good, and ultimately, that's the most we can ask. Lord knows, there are days, even weeks—dark times aplenty, when life gets its licks in and the way seems lost and impossible. I hope you are doing okay.

Know that I haven't forgotten you and yours…

Rich said...

You took a fine hummingbird shot. I enjoyed spending time last weekend trying to catch shots of these flighty birds. The hummingbirds at your feeders are indeed difficult to shoot (photographically speaking that is). They just don't like to stay in one place for very long so that you can catch them with the camera.

Rich

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

Rich…

I'd call it an okay shot (for a feeder shot) as it's just not crisp enough from the crop and a bit "noisy." I'm sure some of yours will be much better.

The good thing about the feeder situation is that it keeps a steady stream of birds around to practice on…and for us underlensed shooters, we can rely on the "even a blind hog finds an occasional acorn" syndrome. This was the closest I came to an "acorn" this time around.

Bernie said...

You were very busy Grizz but it was with family, friends and much accomplishment.....those are the kind of weeks I love.....I love humming birds, they amaze me with what they can do.......:-) Hugs

Rowan said...

Nice photo even if it is at a feeder:) I've only ever seen humming birds at my aunt's house in Canada, we don't have them in UK. Pity as they are fascinating to watch. It's annoying how life tends to get in the way of blogging isn't it? I have the same problem especially in summer.

George said...

No such thing as a bad hummingbird shot, Grizz. Anything that gets us closer to nature keeps our minds saner for at least another day.

Here I am in Manchester, England, waiting for a train to take me to the starting point for my coast to coast trek. Found a computer and just thought I would check in with my blogging friends. Glad you're back after a few days.

The Weaver of Grass said...

What is better than a floating mind Scribe - nothing that I can think of. Wish we had humming birds here - they are so pretty.

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

Bernie…

Yup, there's no better times spent than with family and friends.

Where I grew up, though Mom had tons of flowers of all sorts around the house, hummingbirds were a rarity. Spotting one working a bed of blooms was cause to alert anyone inside to quick come out and see. This might happen once or twice per summer. Here, I often have several hummers in sight at once, chasing each other around the feeders. All ruby-throated. I expect you, living where you do, have several species to enjoy.

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

Rowan…

You'd really enjoy hummingbirds, I'm certain. Sorry you don't have them in the UK. They really make a garden complete.

Sometimes life does, indeed, get in the way of blogging, eating up all available time. Often I find I've simply run out of energy and will by the time I do have available time. Occasionally, I admit, it's pure laziness. And then there are days when I can't imagine anything I might write or say could possibly be considered worthwhile…and so I do us all a favor, lay low and await some fickle muse.

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

George…

I'll avoid comment or reflection on my possible sanity. Best wishes on your wonderful walking adventure. I'll look forward to hearing about it…

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

Weaver…

Need I confess that having my mind float off on some wistful daydream is a rather regular occurrence? Probably not—especially not if you've read many previous posts.

I wish you had hummingbirds, too. You'd enjoy them very much, I know. Maybe even more than scarlet cardinals.