Thursday, June 25, 2009

if you keep your eyes open

I see a lot of weird things biking to the boathouse at 5:45am for rowing. There aren't many cars on the roads, so I can sort of space out about my cycling and observe my surroundings.

Today I passed a woman who appeared to have left the house without her pants - she was just wearing black underwear, a jacket, and hiking boots. Weird.

Then a baby squirrel tried to play chicken with me. I managed to dodge him without a scrape.

I biked past the candy factory, which usually smells like Junior Mints or Tootsie Rolls. Today it smelled distinctly like french toast! Oh, how torturous for someone who had not yet eaten breakfast, and would not be eating for another three hours.

In a dumpster near the MIT Museum, a giant seagull was foraging for food, and found a whole slice of pizza which he prepared to fly off with. Gross... seagulls are like giant flying monsters.

The river was foggy this morning, and our row was full of snafus (one missing rower, a coach boat that ran out of gas), but I did see a red-wing blackbird hopping around on shore, looking for food. And a mama mallard duck and 5 baby ducklings swimming around after her! The biggest bummer of this prolonged cold weather is the noticeable lack of baby ducks. Other typical sightings on the Charles include cormorants, which are black birds that seem to swim under the water with only their head sticking up, and frequently dive underwater like stealth mode. Canadian geese abound - they would be kind of beautiful if they didn't poop everywhere. My favorite early-morning sighting is the black-crowned night heron. It took me forever to figure out what this guy was called! They always stand alone, without moving, on some log at the edge of the river, showing us their long white torsos and short spindly legs. They wear a black cap and cape, and I saw a long white plume feather one time. Coolio.

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