Today, as I made pancakes for the girls ("...with chocolate chips please daddy!"), a bird alighting on the top of a white pine outside our greatroom window caught my eye. "Why," I thought, "is a Gray Jay this far south?" I stopped what I was doing and went to the window. Upon closer inspection, I saw that it was in fact a Northern Shrike. Seeing a bird I've not encountered before is increasingly rare, and therefore increasingly desirable. It enlarges my world in ways I can't easily explain, even to myself.
Whether or not Shrikes like chocolate chips in their pancakes, and this is why it came today and never before, I leave you to decide.