Friday, October 2, 2009

I finally bought a field guide...

I couldn't stand it anymore... Field guides are expensive everywhere, I suppose.
But there is nothing that gives me more delight than observing that around me and learning everything I can about it.
Also, I was tired of feeling so sick and having nothing to do!
So, what do we have here?
The top left is a photo of African waxbills: the black-faced and the blue. I especially like the blue ones, as they seem very common here, almost as common as the Robin back home.
Some of you may have recalled my dismay at seeing so many robins when I arrived in Alaska. I'd give anything to see a robin here... (We do have robins in South Africa, just not the American one.)
My bird photos are likely to not ever be great as, as birds will, birds tend to not come close and my camera, although good, is not quite good for shooting small birds that are in constant motion. And I don't know enough about editing to make them any larger.
But I love watching the birds here, as they are so new to me. I have a large window in my room that sits over my writing table so that I can watch them from--and have a pair of binoculars that my good friend Ellen gave me. (Actually, I believe it was a joint gift for Deanna and I, and Deanna has graciously allowed me to bring them.)
I was not much of a birder in the states: there are too many trees and therefore, many places for them to hide. While I loved watching the birds at the feeder, I was want to look for them anywhere else. It's fun to have my hobby grow a bit.
The photo on the top right is of a lovely, lovely African wildflower that grows abundantly here. It's name is not African, however: the White Mexican poppy (Argemone ochroleuca). As the name suggests, it is not native, and rather an invasive species from, you guessed it, Mexico. It grows everywhere .The farmers all laugh at me when I stop to stare at it. I just love it! Such a delicate little blossom nestled in such a prickly mess!
The photo here, on the right, is Arrow-leaved arum (Zantedeschia albomaculata). When I saw these (these were actually growing at a resort hotel in Rustenburg) I thought: "Oh look! Calla lilies!" And then I thought of how happy both Deanna and my mom would be at seeing them.

Blogger isn't letting me upload another photo, so I'll try again later.

Signing off, karen

As always, Peace Corps is in no way connected to or supportive of this post.


  1. Wow! Those photos are great. Maybe when I come I can bring you a better camera. The pictures of the arum came through! The foliage looks just like elephant ear. It's lovely. Is that the outside of your room? Somewhere nearby? It was GREAT chatting with you this morning...what a blessing FB has turned out to be!

  2. The alum was landscaped outside of the hotel PC put us up in in Rustenburg... Don't see much landscaping in the village--although you see some! Wait until I become a better birder before you get me a better camera! (I love my little camera!)