I’ve been trying to figure out who is singing in the neighborhood for the last six weeks. I make a point of being outdoors whenever possible in the early morning (New Hampshire summers are very short after all). Some singers are obvious, others are more evasively unfamiliar to me. I regret that my education never included identifying birdsong. But as with many things I’ve made it a point of my adult learning path. I’m currently in the 101 level birdsong classes.

I tried an app that analyzes bird song, but the bluebirds always sing at the same time as this character and tend to confuse the analytics. It keeps think its a mockingbird when I can hear the differences clearly. Eventually I came to the conclusion that this was a Brown Thrasher. In the process of figuring that out I’ve come to learn the songs of another half dozen birds I’ve heard in the background music but never took the time to learn about. I’m far from an expert on any of this, but the path is more vibrant.

In the last 18 months I’ve learned about or reacquainted myself with local and world history, stoicism, transcendentalism, world religions, the power of habits, physiology, native trees, horticulture, birds, bugs, the environment and other diverse (eclectic?) side paths on the route from here to, well, there. Side paths lead to other side paths and before you know it maybe you’ve accumulated something meaningful in the old brain. You can’t write about what you don’t know about, and this cajoles me from tangential interest to deeper learning about topics. As a side benefit I’ve become better at writing too… you’ll see it eventually.

The discipline of sharing something daily is priceless.” – Seth Godin