Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Morning Ritual

In the morning when we rise, we have a simple morning routine. If I am the first one awake, I close the wide-open window above our bed. I go out to the kitchen, but don't turn on any lights, fill the kettle with water, measure four teaspoons of English Breakfast tea into the teaball. Hang the teaball inside the teapot, put our respective cups next to it. I look out the slider into the yard to see who is sitting on the feeder.
I open the blinds. Pick up my and dpr's laptops and take them into the bedroom and place them on the foot of the bed. If there's a bird or sunrise that I'm utterly drawn to photograph, I grab the camera and run outside. Sometimes there's a flicker on the top of the feeder post looking so pretty.
Tuesday morning was such a day. Flicker on the post, and then on the ground pecking away at the ants in the lawn. But something else catches my eye. A bird is sitting in the entrance of the new bird house that dpr built last Thursday. Could it be? Has someone moved in already?
The tea kettle whistles. I pour the tea. Let it steep for three or four minutes. While it steeps, I put the lens extender on the camera and go stand by the window to see if I can catch a glimpse of the bird inside the birdhouse. I can only see a bit of color and movement. I think a Black-capped chickadee has claimed the space.
While I'm at the window, a hummingbird flies to the feeder. I'm standing about 36 inches away. I figure I'll just turn around slowly and focus the camera on the hummingbird. I love being this close.
The tea is ready. dpr takes his with milk. I take mine with milk and a small amount of sugar. Even when we worked, we always had our first cup of tea in bed. Now we get to dawdle a bit longer. The day has begun.

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