Sometimes people will ask me, "What have you been doing lately?" I tell them, "Birding." They don't quite hear it the first time. I have to repeat myself. Finally I say, "Bird watching." "Oh, bird watching." Then they get it. To me, birding is different than bird watching. I explain it to people this way. Bird watching is going out looking at birds. Birding is driving down the road, seeing a bird, and turning the vehicle around so you can get another look at the bird.
The other day, Jeremy, the two littlest, and I went out searching for a rare bird, one not often seen in Utah- the Eastern bluebird. Other birders had told us where they were and Jeremy had gone a few days before to see them. We had to go down a bit of a hill to get to the trail to walk along to find them. When Jeremy went before, there was snow on the hill. When we went, the snow had melted so it was a hill of mud. Jeremy held Lucky's hand through the mud, but Jr. Jr. would not set foot in it. To make a long story short, I gave Jr. Jr. a piggy back ride all the way down the muddy hill to the paved trail.
The bluebirds were not in the spot Jeremy found them before, but we did find them a little bit farther down the trail. Hooray! There was a male and female and they were beautiful.
As I was washing muddy pants and socks, and later, as I was scrubbing boots, I again thought it was worth it.
And that is why we are birders.