Learning Observation Skills

North Carolina 164

A coworker surprised me with the statement that he had only seen one eagle in the wild in his lifetime. The surprise came from the fact that we work in the same fields and I see eagles almost on a daily basis. Within twenty minutes of that conversation I spotted an eagle. It took a week however, for me to spot one that I could point out to my coworker.

I do not need to remind you of the cliches on the beauty and glory of eagles. It suffices to say that I still get excited every time I spot one and have a few moments to watch. It helps me understand how after seeing a million pinecones and acorns, my children still get excited when they find one. The sublime does not cease to be sublime because it is familiar. It is healthy to frequently remind ourselves of the miracles and beauty around us and take a little time to enjoy them.

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I recommend that you rethink those common things around you. Take a closer look at a spider web, the pattern of bark on a tree, or grass blowing in the wind. Listen for a bird song you do not recognize, to someone’s laughter, or the difference in wind through the pines verses oak trees. What is it that once made you wonder but is now familiar?


I learned to quickly spot eagles by learning their silhouette and flight patterns. Eagles are most commonly confused with circling carrion. Vultures fly with their wings in a “V” shape and eagle’s silhouettes are straight. The feathers of an adult or immature eagle will glisten in the sun even a long distance away. Ducks and geese will spot an eagle long before I do. Listening to their reaction will clue me in when one is near.

Enrich your life by taking time to observe the sublime. Every environment has its beauty. Your excitement for life will increase.



My son upon learning that the chocolate rabbit was hollow. “That’s an Easter Bummer!”


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