Rowyn (rowyn) wrote,
Rowyn
rowyn

Soaring

I wasn't good about exercising while I was in Florida. It's funny how much harder it is for me to make the time to exercise when I've got the whole day free to do it in. During the work week, I have my routine: I exercise as soon as I get home from work, to get it over with. I rarely deviate from this routine, no matter how little I feel like exercising. But on the weekends and when I'm on vacation, despite having lots more time to do it in, I'm much more likely to skip it entirely.

This time, even when I got back home it was still hard to get back into the habit. I didn't want to go down to my damp musty basement to lift weights, and I didn't feel like dancing in my living room, either. The weather in Kansas City has been lovely since I got back, 70ish and inviting; the only flaw is that it's been pretty humid. I could've gone jogging, but I didn't feel like *that*, either. So I settled for an extra-long walk on both Tuesday and Wednesday -- maybe two and a half mile each day, at a guess. Last night I lifted weights for the first time in two weeks. Yeek. That's the thing about exercise -- you *have* to do it every day, or you'll find the days slipping into weeks without you even noticing that you've not done it lately.

On Wednesday, as I was walking down Ditzler, one of the quiet neighborhood roads off of 40 highway, I saw a huge bird in the middle of the road. I stared at it: I was facing towards the sun and could only see its dark, vaguely crow-like silhouette. But it was much too big to be a crow, occupying a significant fraction of the lane-and-a-half road. Is it a trick of perspective? Am I thinking it's farther away than it is and so it looks bigger? I wondered, drawing closer. It looked the size of a medium dog, two to three feet from beak to tail.

Then it took wing, and I saw a flash of brown. A falcon! It's a falcon! I watched as it disappeared into the tree above. The dogs in the neighboring yard were barking madly. I got near its kill -- a dead squirrel -- and looked into the tree, trying to spot it. I couldn't see it, and after a few moments of searching I continued on my way. I went maybe fifty yards, then turned to see if the bird had returned to the kill. It hadn't -- but as I watched, it soared back into view, wings outstretched. It circled overhead, giving me a magnificent view of its dark brown form, highlighted with flecks of beige. Wow. For a few minutes, I watched it glide in circles with a rare flap of its wings to maintain altitude.

I'm not a birder, so I can't say for sure that I'm even remembering it correctly. But I looked up a list of Missouri raptors here and the silhouette that looks closest to my memory is #18 -- a golden eagle. I remember that its wings looked almost rectangular, nearly straight out from the shoulder and the lower half parallel to the top, more squared-off than tapered at the wing tips.

Wow.

I think there's a golden eagle in my neighborhood.

Maybe I should go for walks more often.
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