mary_j_59: (mug)
Today, by great good luck, I saw something remarkable. The local astronomy club in CT had set up telescopes for viewing the transit of Mercury across the sun. After a solid week of raw, rainy weather, we had a brilliant day. There was a strong wind – the guys told me the wind had actually played havoc with the telescopes – and scarcely a cloud in the sky. I got to the field about a half hour before the viewing period ended and got to look at or through three of the scopes.


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mary_j_59: (bluey)

Resting, close up
Originally uploaded by deirdrej

This amazing pic is of my sister deirdrej's rescue of a baby robin. The parents were nesting under our parent's porch in NW Connecticut. The others had flown, but this little one was stuck in the nest, a bit of tape the parents had used for nesting material twined round his leg. You can see the ribbon on the baby's leg here. Deidrej succeeded in cutting him free, but he flew off with the ribbon still round his leg. She had to capture him - more than once! - and hold him upside down to untie him. A stressful process for both of them! She put him (or her) back on the nest when s/he was free. A half hour later, the baby had flown.

mary_j_59: (bluey)
Yes, it was snowing again yesterday, and they expect more tomorrow. But our neighbors are sugaring off, and I saw a northern mockingbird flashing his tail feathers as I drove to work this morning. Also, the crocuses by the bank are finally budding, and, this past weekend, the bluebird pair was investigating the upper nest box. The male's in breeding plumage - a rich, dark blue. Maybe we'll have baby bluebirds soon!

There is still ice on the pond at the bottom of my parent's drive, but, when I went for a walk, I saw a beaver swimming in the open water by the road. He was quite calm - I watched for several minutes as he swam in oval patterns, apparently chewing something, before diving under the slushy ice. Neat! This only the second time in my life I've been that close to a beaver. They used to be rare in CT.
mary_j_59: (kiril sword)
Those of you who are also his friends will know that Jon Gibbs is quite a guy! He is selling these mugs along with his ebook on CD, and I would urge all of you who write to get one.* Because it's true. If you write, you are a writer. You don't have to wait for anyone else to validate you; you don't have to be published (though that sure would be nice!); you don't have to be a bestseller. All you have to do is write. So give yourself a boost and remember: if you write, you are a writer. It doesn't matter how the world defines you.

*(or whatever creative thing you do, as Brenda Ueland says. It's all good!)

A couple of other things: The colors are really glorious now here in Southern NY. The maples are any number of shades between pale yellow green and scarlet, and the cork bushes and sumac and poison ivy (yes, poison ivy. One wonders why it's so pretty) are deep crimson. When driving back from a meeting, my sister and I saw a nut or oak tree (probably an oak) with purply-brown leaves. You wouldn't think all these colors could look so lovely together, but they do.

And my sister and I just saw How to Train Your Dragon It's an utterly charming movie, but nothing at all like the book - which is also utterly charming. I'm not sure I don't like the movie even more than the book. The one thing I didn't like was the boys' voices; they were all played by older boys or men whose voices had changed, and that didn't feel right to me.

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mary_j_59: (Default)
Yes - it's still Lent, and I am still trying to cut down on my internet use, but I just had to post this. Since we're going to Terminus in Chicago, anyway, I decided to submit two of my stories and one paper for possible public readings. They accepted the stories! so I will be reading Gift and Burden and possibly (if there's time) Tommy Serpent on the ninth of August. If any of you are at the convention, please come!

In other news - a very spectacular full eclipse of the moon here in the Northeastern U.S. My sister and I got to see some of it; our parents called us to be sure we would. The moon went a sort of dusty orange color, and there were two small, very bright stars right under it. Very cool!

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