Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Miss Flora and the Cardinal Vine.

Today has been an extraordinary day. I have spent several hours in the garden and Flora has come closer to me than ever before. Twice this morning she hovered over my head and let out her little chirping sounds while looking directly at me. 

She was so close to me that I was unable to focus my lens. 
It was a very special visit. 
And then, a delivery of local honey and beeswax arrived today as a gift and I am reminded that life is full of delicious nectar and blessings, we just have to be available to receive it when it spontaneously appears. 

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

The Secret Lives of Hummingbirds. Part Two.

The Summer heat is upon us, today is humid, sticky and heavy. Big fast rain touched the garden this morning and Miss Flora did not appear until later in the day. Her behavior has quickened in recent days, this makes me think that perhaps she laid eggs and they have hatched. She darts from flower to flower with a new speed and incredible agility. 
I caught her napping on a cedar branch a few days ago. I never knew that hummingbirds napped sitting up! As I took her picture, she heard the sound of the camera and raised her head to see where I was and what the commotion was all about, only to rest her head again into her hummingbird slumber. 

Somehow, this picture makes me love her more. She is safe here. Safe enough to stay, despite my paparazzi tendencies to follow her around the garden with a very large and heavy lens, extender and camera body. She is teaching me about what she needs to feel comfortable and stay in one place. It is really a delicious metaphor for life.
It seems we are developing a new rhythm. She comes to the windows, looks in and continues to be just as curious about me as I am about her amazing tiny iridescent green being. 

Her favorite flowers continue to be purple salvia, magenta salvia, and deep orange fuschia. She loves hanging baskets, and it appears as though she often competes with bees for access. I have seen some serious bee pecking happening between the two of them.
The peonies above were from the garden. While she did not fall for the peonies, they were curious to her, she explored them briefly. 

Above is a picture of Flora on the tip of a cedar branch. How those tiny feet stabilize her on that very fine branch tip is very mysterious. The hummingbirds are so very delicate and yet so strong. 
Below is a picture that I took while she was feeding on the purple salvia. She appears so still, and as though she is looking directly at me. 

Since the last post, I have a few more observations to share from my time in the garden. The most significant is that waiting for hummingbirds is a complete and profound mediation. One can not have an expectation, or be tense in any way. She always seems to show up, with a low hum, just when my thoughts have turned inward or towards something beautiful in the garden. 
My nervous system becomes aware that she is near and sometimes I try not to look directly at her because if I move too quickly, she will dart away into the woods. 
I have more access to her when I am so completely in the moment and I remember to breath. There are times that I am taking her picture and I get so excited, I think 'oh this is the picture' and then my heart begins to race and my breath quickens and I realize that the lens is moving too much, there is a lot of wobble.
My capacity to go in, be still and available has only become more spacious with her here this Summer. I feel so very grateful to know her and share these images. 
Wishing everyone a beautiful evening. 

Friday, June 30, 2017

The Secret Lives of Hummingbirds. Part One.

Here begins an elegant adventure of the curious life of a beautiful female Ruby Throated Hummingbird named Flora. She travels long distances between the lush tropical lands of Central America and returns to the East End of Long Island, to Springs, in East Hampton.

First a little background on who these gem like creatures are...Ruby Throated Hummingbirds, also known as Archilochus colubris are named for the fine magenta feathers that emerge from the throats of the males. Last month, I was flashed by a male several times. His feathers were remarkable and the color was dazzling. When the sunshine hits these stunning feathers, they sparkle like a bouquet of shimmering rubies.
These particular hummingbirds travel to as far away as Panama and the West Indies for the Winter months, often to returning to the same gardens in the Northern hemisphere year after year. What I find most impressive, is that they can fly across the Gulf of Mexico from theYucatan to Florida and Louisiana and up the East coast. 
So Miss Flora is seen here in all of her glory. Females do not have the ruby feathers.
so far this season, several other hummingbirds have tried to compete for the garden, but as they are quite protective of their environment. She does not share her flowers. 

Throughout the season, regular postings of her adventures under dried Angelica flowers, mid-air antics, and regular nectar feedings from bright and beautiful flowers will be documented.

There is so much goodness and meaningful wisdom that arises when sitting in the garden for hours waiting for such delicate and revealing
moments and pictures. 
As I have cultivated this curious relationship with hummingbirds, so many pearls of wisdom have been uncovered...

~Slow is indeed fast~

~ Patience is a virtue~
For more interesting insights as miss Flora shares herself with all of us and additional captivating images, please stay tuned!
Wishing everyone a beautiful Summer. 

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Dr. Bowling Goes to the Gardens.

It has been quite a full time, and now Spring is upon us and today the first oriole and hummingbird appeared. The warmth of the day brought on a feeling of hope and well being. 
This past week I was with my friend Tasha Mannox and his assistant David, for a special adventure in the Bronx Botanical Gardens. It was masterfully planned by the universe that we should all meet while the Chihuly glass exhibit is embedded in the masterfully designed arrangements of tulips, narcissus, allium, cherry blossoms and rhododendron. 
Tashi is visiting New York, after is trip to Bhutan. 
The experience of being at the Gardens was a feast for the eyes, soul and spirit. 
There was a sense that we were walking through fields of magic. 
Tasha's work is equally as magically as is his presence. He and David appeared for our meeting artfully dressed in the colors that melded seamlessly into the Chihuly glass sculptures.
Days of such goodness are to be cherished and tucked away in the reservoirs of our hearts where we hold our dearest and most colorful memories. 

Since my last post, I have finished my fourth year of trauma resolution study in Denver, Colorado and completed my Doctoral degree. There will be more time for photographs of hummingbirds and whales, Earl Grey tea and walks in nature with dear and patient friends who supported me from near and far while I dove down into myself and touched the bottom of the ocean of my potential and came back with an understanding that now I begin again from scratch and start anew.