We start to sow seeds in January, and water twice a day. We watch and care for the growing seedlings, thinning, weeding and nurturing them until mature. We till up gardens, spread mulch, fertilize, and watch our plants grow. We spend an enormous amount of time and money creating a garden, not like the rest, but overdoing it to the extremes. Then we wait. We watch with excitement, sometimes days on end without even a glimmer of hope. Sadness can set it, but it doesn't stop us from watching and waiting.
Then it happens! A swift movement and a flash of feathers! Could it be? Our hearts race, and our eyes focus. Am I sure it was a hummingbird? We start to over think it, and question ourselves. We wait and wonder for a second sign of proof. Sure enough! He arrives at the feeder, and our fears disappear. He arrived! He made it through unthinkable dangers and distances throughout the year. He traveled from an entirely different continent just to make it home. We work, wonder, worry, and wait every year just to see our tiny little friends return. It's not just an interest we have, or a hobby like the rest. It's an investment that requires long term dedication. It's not a job or a chore, but a long term commitment. It's not something that can be easily explained to a friend or family member. Ultimately, it's a joy that keeps us interested for months, and invested for years.
It's captures like this that push us to doing what we do. That moment, imprinted in our mind, is a piece of nature that we witnessed, rare and unforgettable! Simply put, it's what we do!
Juvenile Ruby-throat giving his best effort to get every last bit of nectar from a Bluebird Clematis. August 9, 2019. N.E. of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.