One of my harbingers for spring is the vulture. Once in a awhile you see one when it is still a bit wintry out, but then it disappears, and in a week or two they are here in droves. I figure that the single brave vulture who risks getting his wee 'nekkid' head snowed on must be the scout. Of course, there are those out there who actually know. I just watch and conjecture.
I seem to be a curiosity to them. I yell at them. It's my method of animal communication. Over the last couple of summers as I have tried to work on the house, they have gathered. Sometimes there are as many as seven or eight just circling my head. On occasion, when I have been down in the trench digging in the mud, and I felt hope fading , the vultures would arrive. As their circles would sink lower and lower, I could feel them watching me. that's when I would yell, "I'm still moving!!", with an optional, "I'm not dead yet. No eating until I'm dead" I'm told that vultures have exceptional olfactory abilities. Sweating in the mud, I could understand their confusion.
They don't seem to make an impressive appearance when other people are here. When someone else is with me, we see bald eagle and hawks. There is a kestrel nearby. He isn't seen as much but he calls often. One morning after a storm there was a brilliant white seagull floating above the house. But, when I am alone it is the vultures that keep me company.
I am trying to figure out if their appearance for me is good luck or bad. Some cultures say they carry messages from the dead for the living. i have heard of others doing purification of a place so the vultures would not, perhaps could not, gather there any longer. Well, they gather for me, so apparently I'm on the hit parade in the afterlife. Yep, everybody's got advice. The other day I was telling my Dad that his delivery system was faulty. It would get to thirty feet over my head but his actual meaning was unclear.
There have been times when they were buzzing me, and I could see their birdy, glinty eyes, and I have considered a purification ceremony. But I'm not sure. This might be a connection that I want. They waft over me in their bird dance and then the one will drop and swoop over me or circle lower, watching me. Always just the one that gets so close. I'd like to think it is a message. I want to believe it is my Dad or maybe, women from my line. Warrior women infusing me with their strength, toughening me for this new life. But just in case, I yell, " I'm moving! No eating until I'm dead!!"