Thursday, February 11, 2016

Here for the Early Bird Special?

Certified photo by Stan Rolfsrud.
A swallow at Mission San Juan Capistrano on February 11, 2016.
That's a time-worn mission wall in the background. 
Believers no more.
(We're not proud of what we've done.) 
Francisco has kept things tidy at Mission San Juan Capistrano for the past 11 years -- and he knows. Kathleen knows too. The swallows return to Capistrano on March 19 every year. Period. The famed cliff swallows know exactly when to come here. It’s historic fact. It is also a miracle. They use a divine calendar or something.
Doubting Stan arrived with his good wife at the mission today, armed with his myth-buster camera and a cynical attitude. Barely yards within the gate, he spotted his first target. Kathleen was not impressed, that couldn’t be a swallow, she said. Too early.
Later on, we interviewed Francisco. Yes, he knows what a swallow looks like. No, they won’t be here until March 19.
Aha! Stan whipped out his trusty myth-buster and presented the evidentiary photography. Try as he might, Francisco couldn’t keep a straight face. That was a swallow on the little screen alright, he admitted. First one he’s ever seen before March 19.
Must be climate change or something. El Nino? The Early Bird special?


Anonymous said...

i could be tricky and tell you there's a must-see Sea near there, the Salton Sea. South of you, thru the pass and down 10 a ways.
BUT: the truth is it's an awful tragedy and killer of migratory birds, and the shores are lined with dead fish as well. There are falling-down buildings where they thought they could make the place a resort town before they figured things out.
Another one of those things that needs to be cleaned up somehow but hasn't. Guess you could read about it on the internet and save yourself a trip. ( We went; I had to see it for myself. )


Hai Dang said...

I believe that is a male common house sparrow not a swallow.