where the writers are

We are not accustomed to seeing wildlife. This morning, my daughter exclaimed, "Look!" as a fawn paraded outside our kitchen window. I said, "If you see the baby, the mother is not far behind." We watched for a moment until the fawn disappeared up the lane.

Hummingbirds are coveted, it seems, by those who don't see much wildlife. Out here on the hill in Penngrove, we see more than our share. As I sit on my back deck the hummingbirds joust just feet away from me for position in the honeysuckle. These are not passive creatures. They hiss and whir and dive, beaks extended in an effort to pierce their nemeses. They fear no one and nothing.

Later in the day, working in my kitchen, window open for air on this sultry day, I heard a loud "HMMMMMMMMM" to my left. I looked and was startled to be face to face with a hummigbird. He looked at me; I looked at him. He seemed to want in, and I was blocking his way. There was a bit of a face-off before he spun and flew elsewhere. I had feared he would fly straight into my face.

Two days ago, upon returning from a quick walk to the compost heap, I discovered that a hummingbird had flown into the cottage and couldn't get out. My daughter yelled, "Dad, let's help it!" I reached beside the bird to open the right-hand French door that might free it. Door open, it still didn't realize it could escape. So I grabbed a broom and nudged it, pane by pane, toward the open door. Finally it zipped off to freedom. My daughter said, "Dad, we're just like super heroes." I said, "Yes, Dolores, we are."