Fleeing the Storm!

The news was all about a huge storm headed for Lincoln, Nebraska. Super cold winds and snow forecast for the weekend. We decided to leave a bit earlier than originally planned to avoid the mega-storm. It was quite foggy as we left Friday morning, but cleared pretty soon, and we drove all day, stopping at Liberal, Kansas. The night was clear, and we saw references to Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz. If I cared enough, I’d look up if Liberal was a shooting location or something. But apparently I don’t.

The next morning was very cold and windy, with slight snow flurries. We spent the day in our nice warm hotel room. When we left Sunday morning, there was a bit of snow on our car, but that was the only snow we encountered on the trip.

We spent the next night in Alamogordo, and chose a nice little mexican restaurant for dinner. It turns out Bill Clinton visited during his presidency, and they have made his table a shrine. OK, not really, but there is a plaque commemorating the event. There are many photos of other celebrities’ visits in the entryway. I’m not sure if they all came because Clinton had been there, or he came to see them… I asked the proprietor how they’d scored a presidential visit, and he shrugged and said “I don’t know, I guess we just got lucky!” I thought that was Clinton’s line…

I’ll admit it was nice to get “home” to our campsite in Arizona. Clear, warm, and not a hint of snow!

Later in the week was “Meet the Clubs” night. Over 80 groups had info about their particular interest, and how to join up with them. If you wanted to participate in every group, you’d need to clone yourself about 6 times first. One of the pottery examples looked like a pumpkin my favorite barber Dave would have done. If you’re reading, Dave, this one’s for you! I spent some time at the Ham Radio table.

We tried an early morning trip to the Sweet Water area to see if more birds were active then. Yep, we saw a pretty good assortment. The greatest find was a Red Naped Sapsucker, a relatively rare woodpecker-like bird. A local birder, who saw it with us, told us she hadn’t seen one here for five years!

Another new one for us was the Yellow Rumped Warbler.

Lots of interesting water birds, and even a few turtles.

I know there are far too many pictures of Pintails, but they are so beautiful I couldn’t resist.

The Vermillion Flycatcher is a favorite of mine. Brilliant red, and hard to photograph against a bright sky!

So we made it back to Arizona and found some interesting new birds for our list…

SPOILER ALERT: Next week we are headed for a far more exotic, tropical location, and plan on seeing a whole lot more interesting species! Stay tuned!

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