Friday, March 20, 2009
I'll Sleep When I'm Dead
From Oak Harbor, Ohio, Kenn writes: In my most recent book, Flights Against the Sunset (published by Houghton Mifflin in 2008), there was a whole chapter ("Nightland") that was an extended essay on sleep deprivation. None of our friends were surprised about that. For Kim and me, sleep is usually pretty far down the list of priorities. There are always too many other interesting things to be doing.
Right now we're a little more crazed than usual. This weekend is the big annual banquet / celebration of the Black Swamp Bird Observatory (BSBO), and we've been swamped with trying to prepare for it. The observatory has a great staff and a lot of wonderful volunteers, without whom nothing would ever happen (come to think of it, I'm a volunteer). But still, Kim has been going like crazy all week, like a hummingbird on overdrive, dealing with a zillion details relating to the weekend. I never move as fast as she does, but I've been preoccupied with prep for the weekend as well.
Most of the action is taking place in Port Clinton, on Ohio's North Coast. It kicks off tonight (Friday night) with a show by our band, 6-7-8-OH, playing classic rock from 8 to 11 in a benefit concert for the observatory. Tomorrow morning (Saturday) I'm teaching a workshop on field identification of ducks, geese, and swans, a two-hour intensive course (and no, I'm not finished preparing for it yet). Saturday afternoon there's a tour of local businesses in Port Clinton, focusing on the many who have offered support to BSBO. Then in the evening we have the annual banquet, with awards, silent auction, etc., and a featured presentation by Norm Smith from Massachusetts Audubon, showing pictures and talking about his amazing research on Snowy Owls. Then Sunday morning we have field trips followed by a celebratory brunch.
And then maybe we sleep, or at least lie around on the floor with our tongues hanging out.
Ah, Spring! It's such an exciting time of year, the birds are all jazzed up, and so are we! But if you've called or written to us recently and haven't heard back, this is my attempt to explain why!