"It was imprudent of us, in the first place, to become authors. We could have become something regular, but we managed not to.
We were lucky, but we were also determined." Roy Blount Jr

"I don’t change the facts to enhance the drama. I think of it the other way round, the drama has got to fit the facts,
and it’s your job as a writer to find the shape in real life."
Hilary Mantel

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Sunday Stroll: Raptors & Wild Critters

The past 48 hours have been a whirlwind of activity. Friday afternoon: cookbook meeting. Friday evening: dinner party at neighbour's house, at which I provided dessert for 20. I made my version of "that pear-chocolate-almond thing I fell in love with in my favourite restaurant in Paris." Everybody wants me to put the recipe in the cookbook...except there is no real recipe.

Saturday morning the Chap and I headed out for the annual Discover Wild New Hampshire Day at the Fish & Game Department. It was a great turnout as usual. Saw friends and F&G staffers and supporters and at least one legislative colleague.

Officer Dog was there. Man in uniform, dog wearing a law enforcement badge. What's not to love?

Usually I stalk Smokey the Bear until I get my photo op with him, but I was a girl with a mission and our time was limited. I did see him, he was constantly surrounded by little kids.

I was there to see the NH School of Falconry and NH Falconers Association display and to speak with--interrogate--some of the experts. As usual, it was a very popular exhibit, but I was able to chat with one of the falconers at length. The male protagonist in my novel is a falconer, therefore I've been studying 17th century falconry methods and practises. It hasn't changed much in all those years. And of course I photographed the many magnificent birds.

Thinking deep thoughts.

"Planning to post this picture on your blog, are you?"


Hood-wearing gyrfalcon. His handler was the one I spoke with. The hood is calming--with so many people around, the birds can get stressed. But this was the only hooded bird I saw.

Birdy bling. Close up of jesses and bells.

"I'm a bird of prey, can you tell? Pretty scary, right?"

We always stroll over to the ridge for the wonderful view along the Merrimack River to the Capitol City. The gold dome of State House is visible at the right.

My other favourite display is the NHTA stuffed critter exhibit. Families congregate here, identifying the animals they recognise, and learning about the ones they've never actually seen in real life.

A red fox.

Bobcat threesome.

I otter jump on you.

We hastened from F&G headquarters to our town library, which was hosting the New Hampshire Library Association meeting. We were panelists for an afternoon discussion on how we funded and built our new library. I explained about the case statement used for grant writing and local PR and the Get Out the Vote Efforts. The Chap covered the feasibility study. Lots of Q&A.

We raced home to prepare the appetisers for our 2nd dinner party in 24 hours, with a group of friends from church.

After all this activity, I'm having a quiet day but I hope a productive one.

There's lots of this going on in my gardens:

Thanks for stopping by. For other strolls, please go here.

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