|The map is only an approximation of the travels and only includes life birds. I also went up to SEQ in February, but I dipped on finding an Oriental Cuckoo. I was also dealing with bad depression during that time.|
I did no more major travelling until April when I met up with Robert again and joined in with the Victorian birders on the beginning of their big birding adventure. At Coober Pedy, with the help of younger ears, I was able to find and add Thick-billed Grasswren to my list. And then I made a decision to make a massive dash north to Katherine, NT. My old bogie-bird, Yellow-rumped Mannikin was being very cooperative there and it was only about two thousand kilometers. I am very glad I made the trip and it had some funny moments (those blogs are here).
|Bogey no more... the Yellow-rumped Mannikin|
|Robert's photo of me on the road to Birdsville|
|I am not a "badge wearer" this lives on the inside of Troopi's sun visor beside the 600 badge.|
On the way back we called in at Rupanyup where I saw my second Letter-winged Kite in Victoria. It was a lifer for James and a thrill to see. Also, our pal Gary Gale showed up and watched it with us. That was a memorable day.
Then there were not a lot of travels until the big trip in September, the Thunderbird Princess Parrot Expedition. That trip will remain one of the highlights of not only my birding life, but of my life in general. I will always cherish that adventure. Of course I blogged about it and you can read it here. I will be working on another book, possibly to be called, “After the Year” and that trip will fill several chapters. It was more than a birding trip. Some of that journey was internal and very necessary. And I saw about 50 Princess Parrots in total over three of the days out there. More importantly, two new life-long friendships were forged with Glen and Bernie. We remain close and in regular contact to this day.
Spring came with more migraine adventures. Botox injections, which had at first seemed like a miracle were working less and less. Then there came the amazing opportunity to move into a two-bedroom house. And we did. I am writing this from my study that doubles as our guest room. It is the bird room and the map room. It is the me room. But 2018’s birding was not done yet. Just after Christmas James and I dashed over to Whyalla, SA and twitched the Citrine Wagtail. That was the eleventh and last lifer for me in 2018. The Tufted-duck was probably already at the WTP, but no one knew it yet.
Now I will have a look through my photos for which ones to use to accompany this blog entry. This morning I began the seventh day in a row of migraines. Gratefully, they are mostly not intense. As I write, a migraine visual is blotting out the word that I am writing (that has now passed). The back of my neck aches and spreads into the pressure in my head like a tightening band around my temples and pressing into my forehead. It seems that for now, this is my new normal. I head off to Tasmania this Thursday evening for weekend pelagic trips and will return next week. I will do whatever I need to do to function through the trip and I know that I will enjoy much of it. When I get back, I will get onto my neurologist and see what we can try next. What we’ve been doing is no longer working and this is not a sustainable way to live. I will keep y’all posted.
|This is my desk where I write|
I write therefore I am. I share therefore it’s real. I love because it is why we are here.