I did not take an excursion. Instead, I stayed in my house for a second day in a row: the cold was so sharp, and the house was so warm and light. I almost feel rested up for the week--almost.
One thing that makes leaving a bit difficult these days is the sheer variety of things happening just outside my living room window. My various wild neighbors are, to a one, usually unhappy that I'm around--though they're happy for all the extra food.
Now, when I wake up in the morning, I wake up to the sounds of one of the downy woodpeckers (I have both a male and a female) banging away at the suet cage, and to the sounds of the juncos clustered and peeping on the ground under the window. All afternoon, the nuthatch returned to the window side of the feeder and ransacked its seed tray, throwing the undesirable stuff over his shoulder. It hit the window with a rattle and a ping, then fell to the ground where the tiny birds pursued it. Titmice flew into the corner tree--the tree that yesterday was full of soot-gray juncos, huddling--and from the corner tree they flew to the feeder, to the tree, to the woods. When I walked to the window, they cocked their heads and flared their tufts.
When I grow up, I want a house painted in the colors of titmouse and nuthatch.