Friday, June 17, 2011

New Housemates

I have fully unpacked and moved into Elinor’s house with the rest of the GRP.  Lately I’ve felt myself in a constant state of packing and unpacking as I repeatedly shuttle my belongings between Craftsbury, Hanover, home, Europe, and elsewhere.   It has been over two years since I have stayed in one place for more than 2 or 3 months without packing up the car and moving to a new room.  So I’m very excited to settle into life at Craftsbury!  I’ll still be traveling a lot but it will be nice to finally have a more permanent home base!
I’m also excited to for our new housemates and teammates who have recently moved to Craftsbury.  It’s great to have Clare Egan, Maria Stuber, and Bryan Cook joining our team.  New team members refresh the energy of the whole group and training with Clare and Maria this week has been awesome!
And speaking of new housemates, my first morning in Craftsbury I woke up to a loud and constant chirping.  I opened my shade and there was a robin’s nest with four baby robins sitting on the windowsill just opposite the pane of glass.  I’ve since spent a lot of time watching and photographing my robin family.  Robins are a monogamous species and both the mother and father robin take care of the young. The mother mostly protects the nest while the father brings home the worms.  At first the parents would get very upset, frantically and loudly chirp, and fly in erratic circles whenever I was in my room.  They have since become much more comfortable with my presence so I’ve been able to do a lot of observing (ahhh the life of a professional skier) and have witnessed the dad regurgitating a worm into a chick’s mouth as well as many of sibling squabbles.  Clare did some research and learned that chicks stay in the nest for 13-15 days after hatching.  We missed the hatching so we cannot predict exactly when this event will happen, but judging by how quickly the birds are growing, and the time that has already passed, it is likely that we will see some fledglings soon!