Monday, February 1, 2010

Homesick Yankee Ramblings

A quick scan of this blog reveals that I love Arizona, but I'm from Massachusetts. Many of the photographs and items around our house came out west with us. Every so often I get to looking at one of these things and I get a strong urge to go to where the photograph was taken. Such is the case with these chickadee photos.
Quabbin Chickadees 40/365
There's a spot near the Quabbin Reservoir in the western part of central Massachusetts where birds will eat out of your hand during winter months. I don't want to reveal the exact location, but I will say that it's in an abandoned orchard a short ways into the woods. People have hung bird feeders around and keep them stocked with seed. If you bring some seed, just place it in your hand and wait a moment. Pretty soon a chickadee or titmouse or nuthatch will come along, perch on your fingers, select a good looking seed, and fly off.
Chickadee at Quabbin Resevoir 8/365
I'm not entirely sure that I think its a good idea to encourage wild animals to lose their natural wariness of people. In the same orchard, deer wander about at a distance. They won't come too close, but they don't run away even when you get pretty close. Still, I want to visit this spot so badly and I wish it wasn't over two-thousand miles away.

We shot this on 35mm and developed it in closet I had converted into a darkroom. I used an antique Durst enlarger. It was a lot of fun. Can't help but missing my darkroom and my Worcester apartment.

I noticed that when I Geotagged this photo on Flickr it says this was "Taken in Enfield, Massachusetts." Enfield is no longer a populated town; it was flooded in the 1940's in the creation of the Quabbin Reservoir. This picture was taken in a town that no longer exists. From this distance, its non-existence feels so true.


Tina said...

I visited the old orchard a couple of weeks ago with my daughter and niece. We were disappointed to find that the feeders have been removed and many of the trees are badly damaged. There were no birds nor did we see any deer. However, we did have a great hike along the yellow trail and enjoyed the foliage along the way.

Eric said...

That's a bummer to hear the feeders are gone and the orchard is damaged. I wonder what happened. I've always looked forward to going back there. Glad to hear the foliage was nice, though. Central MA will always give something beautiful, even if other great things pass on.

Anonymous said...

Hi, nicely said about this bird place. I just found it myself while on a journey of discovery in Quabbin. The bird feeders are there. The birds are friendly and fat. All you have to do is stand under a tree and they will come and perch themselves on the branches, and say, come on, feed me. What a lovely, heavenly place.

Eric said...

Thanks for the update. That is a really beautiful and unique spot. Give the birds some seed for me next time you're there!