what's wrong with this picture? if you said why are there cherry blossoms in january, you'd be right. the temperature today hit 70 degrees. i opened up a few windows to air out the house and went outside. judging by the amount of people out and about, i'd say most everybody else had the same idea. i walked down to harvard square and grabbed the 73 bus to the mt.auburn cemetery, hoping to catch a bit of naturing before it got dark.

with it's well-manicured vegetation, the mt.auburn cemetery is not one of my favorite spots for naturing (some animals just don't like man-made habitations), but it is one of the most convenient (within a short bus ride). i checked the chalkboard first to see if anyone's spotted anything noteworthy but it was just the usual assortment of winter birds. it'd been warm enough that they kept the tower opened, normally closed this time of the year due to safety concerns (i.e. icy conditions). i went to auburn lake first, then walked to willow pond.


mallard duck


i came across a blooming cherry tree. although each flower only had a faint trace of fragrance, multiply that by a few hundred blossoms and you get a very pleasant smelling bouquet. the recent string of warm weather apparently was enough tricked these poor trees into thinking it's spring already. it wasn't just the trees that were fooled: there were also clueless honeybees, feeding on the nectar, pollinating the flowers in the middle of a new england winter!


yellow-bellied sapsucker

grey squirrel

other than the cherry tree, the only other thing i saw that was interesting was a yellow-bellied sapsucker, my first sighting. originally i thought it was a downy woodpecker, but after i came home and saw the photo, i realized it was something different. massachusetts seems to be on their migration path, spending their summers in nothern new england and winters in southeast united states.

i caught the 73 bus back into harvard square. walking across the courtyard, i helped catch a stray frisbee flying in my direction. there were also people out enjoying with the weather with their laptops, nearly all of them macs (i guess you have a mac, you want people to see). an tao was back at home, but left for market basket to get some groceries. when he came back home, he made dinner, tortilla burrito pizza (with sausages, mushrooms, and cheese) and a simmered a whole fish.