Detour for the Snow Geese

A Columbus Day author visit this week meant a sunny day drive through some of the most beautiful October scenery in the Northeast.  I enjoyed every minute of the mountains and the maples.  Helen wasn’t as appreciative of the scenery, though.  This is Helen…

…my GPS unit.

Usually, Helen and I get along, even though we’re very different.  I daydream and look out the window a lot.  Helen is very responsible and never gets lost.  I like that in a travel companion, so I generally put up with her bossiness in the interest of arriving places on time.  This week, though, we had it out while I was driving home from my school visit.

Helen: Turn left in one mile.

Me:  Yeah…only I think I’m going to go straight and turn later on because then we can see the snow geese at that wildlife management area up by Route 17.  I’d really like to see the snow geese.  Wouldn’t you?

Helen:  Turn left in point two miles.

Me:  I’m going the snow geese way.  (passes turn)  It’s not that far.

Helen: Make a U-turn.

Me:  They’re really pretty, and it’s just the right time of year.  You can hear them honking and everything.

Helen: Make a U-turn.

Me: No. I haven’t seen the snow geese since I lived in Vermont, more than ten years ago, and it’s October. I’m never in this part of Vermont in October.  We’re going this way.

Helen:  Turn left in point two miles.

Me:  I’m turning left on the snow geese road.  Not before.  (passes left turn)  You’ll like this…you’ll see.

Helen:  Make a U-turn.

Me:  Oh come on… It’s going to take us nine minutes out of our way.  Nine minutes. That’s it. You said so yourself.  What’s nine minutes when we’re talking about thousands of amazing migratory birds?  Where’s your sense of adventure?  Where’s your sense of wonder?

Helen:  Make a U-turn.

Eventually, Helen gave up on me and we arrived at the Dead Creek Wildlife Management Area to join the dozen or so bird watchers taking in the spectacle of the Snow Geese. 

Every fall, huge flocks of Greater Snow Geese stop here to rest and feed on their way to the Chesapeake Bay for the winter.   I loved listening to their honking and the rush of their wings when they took off.  It was worth the extra nine minutes, no matter what Helen says.

Note for Vermont friends… I’ll be doing a presentation and signing books this Saturday from 11-12 at the fabulous Flying Pig Bookstore in Shelburne, and I’d love to see you there!  

Encounters of 1609…
Native Americans had lived along the waterways of the Northeast for generations when French explorers and fur traders began arriving in the late 16th century. What must the two groups have thought of one another?  In this interactive presentation, Kate shares images, artifacts,  and excerpts from her historical novel Champlain and the Silent One as we travel through time to explore the Champlain Valley of 1609.

29 Replies on “Detour for the Snow Geese

  1. Far Encounters

    Dear Kate, glad to meet you. 🙂 After reading your notes I’ve grown in experience. 😐 Your workaholism impressed me but good and even winged somewhat. Thanks a lot for sharing your emotions and your life’s moments I’ve seen on these wonderful, bouncy and meaningful stills. Later on I’m gonna survey them with more attention. Your Monarchs, asters, (bumble)bees are gorgeous! Wonderworthy & estimable is your devotion to books as well. Well done that you disobeyed Helen; otherwise how could we stare with astonishment upon those splendid migrants?)) The sceneries of your spot are magnificent and resemble ours. The same motley at present mounts, maples, birches, aspens & ashes, maybe we only have more conifers (yet taiga). I wish more power to your elbow. Yours respectfully Serge hope to c more of u

  2. Re: Far Encounters

    Thanks for stopping by my journal! When you mentioned your similar scenery, I stopped by your LJ but alas…wasn’t able to read it. Where are you writing from?

  3. Glad you put Helen in her place! 🙂 I love the bottom photo!

    I wish I could to be at your presentation and book signing this weekend. It sounds right up my alley, as I love anything that deals with the Native Americans who lived in this area.

  4. You’ll be okay, even without Vanna… call on her cousin, MapQuest. And have a GREAT time at Rutgers! Can’t wait to hear about it when you get back.

  5. I have the same arguments with mine, except it gets mad and starts shouting “recalculating, recalculating” when I pass a turn.
    She also get mad when I stopped and picked autumn leaves before I left Maine at the end of September. I have to bring them back to North Florida if I want fall leaves in the Fall. They turn around Christmas down here.

  6. I love your journal. I would have done exactly the same. Wow! What scenery.Here in Florida our days are sunny and the wildlife enchanting but…I’m beginning to think I should have accepted my brother’s offer to come to Vermont for Thanksgiving.

  7. Thanks for your comment! It’s beautiful here in autumn. Of course, in a few months, we’ll pay for it with temperatures that don’t make it into positive numbers for days at a time, but…

    Thanksgiving in Vermont is lovely, even though most of the leaves are gone by then. Maybe you can make it up another year!

  8. Yes, Helen recalculates sometimes, too – and she announces it in such a snooty voice sometimes…

    I love that you “import” your fall leaves. I think I’d need to do the same thing if I ever moved south. I didn’t realize that Florida leaves ever turned color. I bet it makes for a lovely landscape around Christmas!

  9. Helen needs to lighten up. I know you would have stopped for the snow geese!

    I just read your blog about hiking plans for the weekend – post pictures, okay? I love seeing the Western foliage, too!

  10. Re: Far Encounters & Маrvеl of Нigh Тесh

    Believe it or not it’s Perm region, west of ðe Urals, Russia. As a minimalist I predominantly use my LJ as starting point for comments, sometimes highlighting significant public events for my so far few friends (all’s started 2 months ago). I don’t believe in random coincidences, interested in many aspects of life of people in diverse countries. And I can’t help wondering at natural miracles all over ðe world. Thanks for listening to my outpourings.)) Gonna observe your blog so you don’t be surprised @ my possible remarks)) Keep doing your best! Sincerely yours Serge C U RSVP

  11. I have a GPS too. Mine seems to sound more annoyed when I ignore her directions. Really, she sounds annoyed. She has been known to take my into deserted parking lots while insisting this is where I requested her to take me. That’s when I start sounding annoyed!

  12. a blast from the past.

    I am not sure if you remember me Mrs. messner, but I am Michelle Rector, I had you when I went to Stafford Middle School, ages ago. I live in Wisconsin now with my boyfriend, and I just happened to see you on LJ. I have to thank you. You were the one that introduced me to poetry. when you used to let me just tinker with the magnetic words. If it wasn’t for you, I would never have began to write. I impress myself everytime I write a poem. Thank you so much. you have been an inspiration to me. I’ll never forget you. If you’d like, add me as a friend. I’d love to hear from you.

    Michelle rector

  13. Re: a blast from the past.

    Of course I remember you, Michelle – and I can’t tell you how happy it makes me to hear that you’re still writing poetry. You were good at it, even in 7th grade. Glad to hear all is well with you!

  14. I love your post! How beautiful!!! You also mentioned The Chesapeake Bay 😉 It warmed my heart.

    I also wish I had my own Helen in my car, except mine would probably and sadly commit suicide. 😉

    Lovely journal you have though. I’m just stopping by to wave!

  15. Hello. I’m a college student in California hoping to someday lead a career much like yours– teaching and writing for young folks! You seem like a lovely woman and I enjoyed the page of entries I just read so much I knew I had to friend you.

    Take care,