Friday, May 08, 2009

Of migrators, endangered and/or disappearing species

(NOTE: I'd like to take time today to acknowledge what's been going on in Nature recently, foul or otherwise.)


photo by Piet Harte

(Note: In that these Canadian geese are heading north in their annual spring migration, it may be necessary for you to flip the image or -- more drastically -- turn your computer monitor to properly display this in its correct orientation -- toward the north.)

A couple of weeks ago while out on the patio, my editor Sam spotted a very similar formation to that pictured above. They were geese flying north. As we strained to listen, they made not a sound audible to my ear. They passed directly overhead straight for the restricted "no fly" air space above White Sands Missile Range just 37 miles north as the crow or, in this case, goose flies. Geese have absolutely no respect for human no fly zones. I don't blame them.

The geese reminded me it's that time of year. A new season. Things are on the move. Going places. I thought of a few more recent examples.


(Note: In that Pontiacs, as represented by this Solstice, are endangered and heading south, if you properly repositioned your monitor to reflect the geese in the previous photo flying north, don't bother to redirect this image to its proper orientation, i.e. south -- it may only disorient you. The more appropriate action here is to simply reach up and turn your monitor OFF, as in "poof!" - gone - EXTINCT!)

Perhaps the fact that General Motors didn't notice their big flyer, the gas guzzling Firebird, was flying south instead of north, we can consider the death of the Pontiac as General Motors' sacrifice for its killing off its future in the electric car, the EV-1, and for its desperate clinging to the past in cars like the Firebird.


The Border Explorers - having just completed their six month stay in the El Paso / Juarez border area, the Border Explorers are once more migrating north to their summering grounds in N.E. Iowa. They left El Paso last Sunday.

Among their many helpful efforts as tireless, dedicated volunteers in our border region, one of Ms. Border Explorer's greater successes was the opening up of markets for products made by the economically devastated community of Palomas, Mexico. Thanks to her, aprons and tote bags made in a Palomas co-op are now being sold locally. This not only provides jobs and economic stimulation, it raises awareness of the needs of the Palomas community with an opportunity for anyone to contribute to their assistance.

"Peter, aka, The Unabomber (without the violence)" - Regular readers may recall irregular visits with "Peter The Unabomber." He departed a day after the Border Explorers, also heading in the direction of the upper midwest. I don't know if it's just *cosmic coincidence* or what, but it seems whenever we get together with Peter, it's always in the presence of very good beers.

Peter had spent most of the winter in the tiny west Texas community of Redford, but we were lucky enough to catch him during his brief layover in El Paso last Saturday before resuming his northward migration.

Redford is most remembered as the site where 18 year old Ezekiel Hernandez was mistakenly shot and killed twelve years ago this month by a contingent of U.S. Marines sent to Redford to guard our border with Mexico. This past fall, Redford was the victim of flooding when the levee protecting the village failed making it an island inaccessible by auto. For those who did not evacuate Redford, mail, prescriptions, homework, and food had to be airdropped. Their alfalfa crop was destroyed.

During his stay in Redford, The Unabomber was helping to procure federal and state aid for Redford by getting the levee that failed restored and grants to help in the revitalization of the community. But as The Unabomber tells it, the federal government's solution being offered Redford residents is $600/acre to sell out and move. It seems the federal government, he says, is more interested in turning Redford into a no man's land to serve as a buffer zone in its border with Mexico.

Meanwhile as Peter relates, a Texas state agent, sent out to study and assess how Texas might help villagers, arrived in a shiny new Jaguar. Talk about a "failure to communicate" (or relate) with locals from the git-go, leaving it inconclusive in which direction little Redford is migrating -- north or south. Stay tuned.

Hopefully, as the year moves forward, we'll see the return of the Border Explorers and Peter The Unabomber. The geese are likely the surest thing, but Dada remains hopeful everyone else will return with them.


eProf2 said...

Gosh, Dada, you must feel all alone right about now. However, the HDB is still there waiting for your return!

Fran said...

The Pontiac brand flew the coop, I just hope the !@!@# government does not act all crazy (as in One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest), throwing more than the $15 billion they already gave out to General Motors as "loan money to be paid back", before they too follow in Chryslers footsteps & just write it off as a part of the bankruptcy. That's for the birds!

I've got my feathers ruffled about $22.2 billion thrown at the automakers, who used a bunch of it for lobbying expenses.

As for the other migratory birds you mentioned, I hope they eventually find their way back to your nest & join the flock.

Border Explorer said...

Checking in from "up North"--Thanks so much for the tribute, Dada. Very nice of you! I'm so lonesome for you and your family. You all are my favorite part of El Paso, and that's saying a lot because I really like El Paso. We're doing fine. I'm off line most of the time, tho, so I've been absent from the blogging world. Forgive me. I'll get back to it soon.

Dada said...

Border Explorer: Great to hear from you. Hope you had a great migration back! Look forward to your blogging resumption. (Oh, and thank you for such kind words!)

Fran: I enjoyed your bird (brained?) themed comment. We birds of a feather must flock together.

eProf: Well, it's summer. School's out so it looks like we'll head up to the HDBC soon and hash over the Obama successes and failures with "Tom and Brenda". Hmmm, which reminds me, a ball of light should be in the area also. I need to check in with him and see what can be arranged.