Hummers

ORDINARILY THE WINDOWSILL between the bookcases on the east wall of the study at Casa d’Alger is reserved for the cats. It’s curtained off and private and, during hot summer days, probably the warmest place in the house — a feature the cats seem to appreciate in an otherwise chillilly-refriglerated house. But every once in awhile, I hear a little chittering conversation going on between a couple of them, and I’ll open the curtain behind them to look out the window and see what’s piqued their interest.

Toni hung up a hummingbird feeder on the front porch earlier this year. It went through pretty much all of the first batch of hummingbird “food” (red sugar water, essentially) by evaporation. As far as we could tell, we got exactly ZERO visitors.

But here lately — the last couple of days — we’ve been seeing little thumb-sized critters with sewing-needle beaks and wings that are not even moving slow enough to blur hovering around the thing.

Now, the cats freak out at the sight of a bird in the birdbath out in the middle of the yard — maybe fifteen feet away. Imagine how excited they get when something not only appears in their field of view MUCH closer, but also appears to violate the laws of physics as cats understand them. Damned things HOVER.

Won’t stand still for a camera, either. I got one shot of one on the OTHER side of the feeder. Took two more because it was so small I couldn’t see it in the camera’s viewscreen. Didn’t know it was gone.

So be vewwy vewwy quiet. I’m hunting hummers.

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