Writer’s Block: It’s for the birds

By DINA ARÉVALO
Port Isabel-South Padre Press
editor@portisabelsouthpadre.com

The weather doesn’t seem able to make up its mind lately. Some days are dreary and cold — the air saturated with a fine, chill mist that caresses exposed skin like the lingering grip of a bad memory. Yet other days are sunny and bright — warm with golden light and refreshing breezes that invigorate the soul.

There doesn’t seem to be any middle ground between the two. It’s simply been that you go to bed one night having said goodnight to a beautiful day only to wake up to a sharp and extreme opposite. It definitely lends credence to the old saying that “if you don’t like the weather in Texas, just wait a minute.”

But one other interesting thing I’ve noticed — and I’m not the only one who has — is that the good weather seems to save itself for the weekends. Lately, Monday mornings have failed to inspire me, with my bleary eyes, to seize the day. And indeed, the winter weather that persists throughout the week makes me glad I work indoors where I can sit at my desk snuggled in a sweater and safe from the biting wind. Then, just when I begin to think it’ll be an indoors-only kind of weekend, as well, the clouds break, the temperatures rise and the sun appears.

For the past several weeks, though the weekdays have been miserable, the weekends have been picture perfect. It’s almost providence that, on the days when we most need to focus, the weather conveniently refrains from providing a tempting distraction from work.

There’s ample evidence to support the idea that positive reinforcement elicits better results than negative, and what better positive reinforcement for completing a week of hard work than waking up to a sunny Saturday complete with clear skies and the sound of birdsong? Mother Nature herself seems to be offering metaphorical cookies for a job well done.

And speaking of Mother Nature and the wealth of riches she can provide, with the return of warmer weather in the Valley comes another gift: the spring migration. Already, millions of birds are making their annual treks from Central and South America on their way back here to the U.S. or as far north as Canada.

The Valley sits smack dab in the middle of two of four migratory bird flyways that crisscross the continent. That, combined with the native biodiversity of our flora and fauna, and this place becomes a paradise for birds needing a respite from their journey.

The migration is just now getting started, but already, a few non-native species can be seen in the Laguna Madre region. Soon, pretty much every state, county, and municipal park with a tree or a pond will become a perfect place to bird watch. For now, though, the dedicated members of the Bay Area Birders — a Laguna Vista birding group that’s free to join — are already gearing up to welcome both the birds and their fans. This Saturday the group will be hosting their 10th annual BirdFest and Nature Quest at the South Padre Island Golf Course located in Laguna Vista. The day-long event kicks off with a guided walk at 7 a.m.

So, if the warm weekend weather trend continues, head on out with the family and learn a little about what makes the Valley a special place for wildlife. And as always, be sure to visit us online at www.portisabelsouthpadre.com

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.portisabelsouthpadre.com/2015/02/27/writers-block-its-for-the-birds/

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