A contralto Machamp, if you will.
If there is an expert reader out there that can identify said bird, I'd be very curious to know what it is. There is also a bird that lives right outside my apartment window that has a birdsong that sounds like it's gargling before it gives a loud wooden click. Kind of like this: "grrrrrKLAK". It's pretty distinctive, so if you can identify that one as well, I'd be particularly indebted to you.
On a related note, I should go into a profession of describing bird calls.
I woke up before anyone else on my campsite, so I clambered out of the tent to go exploring. The sun was slowly but visibly rising and it filtered pumpkin orange through the trees. I stood to see a tree trunk radiating an early autumn glory by that light before the sun moved on. I like that I was the only one to witness that brief prophetic vision. I actually stood in the light a minute in front of the tree, imagining myself illuminated in that flame-like color. Then I crouched to watch a few spiders sway purposefully back and forth, spinning their webs in a self-absorbed design. I wonder if they realized they were competing with neighbor spiders only a handspan away.
I walked away from the campsite and down around the bend to the water. There was only one other person there, sitting perched on a rock scribbling away in his notebook. Maybe he was writing some deep meditative thoughts. Or maybe he was penning some murderous thoughts pertaining to the new intruder that was crackling around on the rocks, disrupting his previous melancholic solitude.
When I looked out into the water, it was still breathing fog that allowed the distant trees and mountains a sort of unconfirmed hazy quality. And there was a small figure coasting through the water, like the head of a much larger animal.
It occurred to me vaguely how strange it would be if that scribbling stranger and I were the only ones to witness the Loch Ness Monster rise out of the water, and I wondered if anyone would believe us.
Of course in the next minute, I realized how silly that sounded. Nessie resides in the Scottish Highlands, after all.
The morning was so serene, I was convinced that even if the Loch Ness Monster rose out of the water, I'd take it in stride.
I proved myself wrong when in the next second, the figure swam closer and flipped in the water. I thought it might be a baby seal, and then scrambled over the rocks to get closer and catch a glimpse of it. I probably created a greater crackly racket, further annoying the ponytailed man who had come out to the beach for a zen-like morning.
I followed the swimming animal across the water until it came to a deck, scaring away a heron perched there. When it crawled out of the water onto the wooden deck, I saw that it wasn't a baby seal but an otter that proceeded to sun itself.
So much better.
Anyway, there wasn't really a point to this post. That was all I wanted to say. I went camping and I saw an otter sunning itself. And later that morning, I had spam and pancakes for breakfast.
Camping isn't so bad.