Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Flying Lessons

Wednesday, June 3, 2009
In the book “Leaning Forward into Your Life”, Mary Anne Radmacher describes how the she felt during a difficult time, “I am an eagle behaving as if I’m a pack mule”.

Minutes from my home, eagles are often seen in a wildlife and bird sanctuary. It has become a sanctuary for me as well. I sometimes visit there to recharge, enjoying the quiet habitat and nearby Pacific Ocean’s crashing waves. During years of hiking these Wetlands, I had startling coyote sightings, run with cotton-tailed bunnies, avoided scores of squirmy black lizardy-things, and escaped herds (well—two) rattlesnakes.

One morning at the Wetlands, I chose to hike a road less traveled--a shady tree lined path. A decision that paid off big time when two young American bald eagles glided over head. From the sanctuary’s marquis, I’d learned that these birds often fly the 26 mile ocean stretch from Catalina Island to this mainland reserve.

That morning I made a new discovery - eagles whistle to one another. The two flighty birds were very conversational, causing me to gasp and stop in my tracks. These eagles were truly a divine presence and I gazed up at them in silence and reverence.

Surprisingly, the pair settled onto tree branches shadowing my path, their position affording me a clear view of their beauty. I had the impression they were discussing me, because they continued to look my way and whistle loudly to one another.

Beneath their tree, I noticed three tiny hummingbirds flittering and fluttering about the shrubbery. They were busy with their own day, unimpressed by whatever the eagles were up to. In comparison to the large birds of prey overhead, the hummingbirds were little guys, but equally beautiful!

I continued to observe the eagles until they lifted off. I felt the power of their huge beating wings in sync with my own rapidly beating heart. Awestruck, I watched as they flew towards the horizon. There was no mistaking them for pack mules.