So, this is going to be a “hive mind” sort of a post where I pick your brains. The question is, “What’s the most interesting thing to do in your region during this season?”
For me, it’s the swans on Tokachi River. Every year, they migrate here to enjoy the clement weather (only -24C/-11F last night – I don’t even want to think about the cold they are escaping!). For a few months, they congregate on the river next to the hot springs, splash around, eat the goodies tourists throw to them, and just generally look as picturesque as they possibly can. Being swans, that’s pretty damn picturesque.
I love picking up a loaf of discounted bread and heading over to the river to watch their antics. Swans, despite their good PR about being calm and serene on the surface, are really noisy creatures when they aren’t swimming. They honk at each, fight, are curious to see who has come down to the river today, and have rather complex interactions with the ducks. You’ll have to imagine them, because I can’t describe them. There aren’t a lot of ducks, but those who are there seem to hold their own.
It fascinates me that they just pick up and leave their summer lives and head south for the winter, then go back when they feel the south is getting too hot. How do they manage to communicate without words? It’s almost magic the way one of them will lift up off the water, and the others follow in an orderly launch, then they make that V-shape in the sky and fly off to the next rest stop on their journey. How do they know? How do they not run into each other?
Going to see the swans is the work of an afternoon. Daytime temps are pretty cold to *this* human, so an hour of observation is about all I need. After that, we can visit the hot springs, or head into town for a cup of hot cocoa and some cake.
This month, I’m going to spend some time exploring the winter of my region. Of course, I’m hoping it’s going to translate into bountiful stories, but even if it doesn’t, I won’t be heartbroken. Just enjoying my home region even in the depths of winter has a certain value.
So, I ask again, what’s going on in your region this month? Whether you are in the cruel clutches of winter, or smothering embrace of summer, I’m sure there’s something cool going on. What is it?