Saturday, July 5, 2008
We recently moved to the country. Now, when we throw open our windows every morning, we're greeted by a symphony of birdsong.
Robins, bluejays, rose-breasted grosbeaks, orioles, and some I have yet to name, use our property as their personal playground. We weren't content to catch fleeting glimpses of birds as they soared past our windows and landed somewhere in a tangle of tree limbs, however. We wanted quality time with our friendly new neighbours, who after all seemed to be happy we were sharing their space.
Before you can say it-seemed-like-a-good-idea-at-the-time, bird feeders of different shapes and sizes were dangling from our hastily constructed bird feeder swingset. They swayed gently in the breeze, weighed down with a bounty of sunflower seeds.
I couldn't wait to see who would pop in and sample our wares.
Over the next few days the odd bluejay visited our brand spanking new food bars, but no one else felt the need to swing by the new eatery.
I would love to say we're bird-watching neophytes, but that would be a bald-faced lie. In fact, over the last few years, we've invested a considerable amount of time researching everything there is to know about bird feeders.
In short, we knew better. Any bird watcher worth his salt knows you need to provide a wide array of tempting treats, based on the types of birds that visit your property. If we had slowed down and taken the time to look at the needs and wants of our friends, we would have laid out a smorgasbord of various seeds, such as millet, safflower, and niger, with just a pinch of nectar thrown in.
If you're new to your neighbourhood and want a deeper connection with those around you, try inviting them into your home. Create a warm welcoming atmosphere, and listen to their stories. Find out what makes them tick. Think along the lines of Robert Fulghum's All I Really Need to Know I Learned In Kindergarten. You'd be surprised how easy it is to reach out and create a deeper connection with your neighbour. It just takes a little effort.
Speaking of reaching out to others, click here to view Five For Fighting's video, which stresses that "we are all connected to one another through our actions. Each person has the ability to make a difference."