August 25, 2011
Oftentimes when I am working in the zoology prep lab at the Field, Dave Willard (bird collections manager) will come in with a tour group and give a brief talk about the birds (specifically the ones me and other volunteers work on) that are brought in to the lab, and how urban areas such as Chicago can pose hazards to migrating birds. Last week I overheard him say "these birds are born with a map of the stars in their heads" , and thus when they come upon a mass of lights in a dense urban area such as Chicago, it interferes with their ability to guide by the night sky.
I left the museum thinking about the phrase "born with a map of the stars". The idea that we all are born with some type of internal navigation system, whether it be a star map or some other type of intuition. I thought about how we start with these mechanisms to help guide us through life, and how there are so many things in life that can convolute these instincts and knock us off course. There's so much audio and visual noise that we ( bird and human) have to sift through on a daily basis, that a lot of the time it's as though we have to dumb down our senses, instincts, and internal guides just to cope. I often come to this realization whenever I am out camping or staying in a quiet rural area for more than a couple of days. Know what I mean? Anyway, I was inspired to make a little watercolor.
Have a lovely weekend, and do something to check in with your internal star map. I promise that it is still there.
p.s the watercolor is in the STORE, along with THIS watercolor too.