On a winter's day when it's so cold you feel like a Russian peasant from Dr. Zhivago, you'll look back and think of the tropical afternoon on the patio. If you sit really still in the shade, I've found, you won't ooze sweat like you're in a sauna. Dave tells me he's been watching a pair of hummingbirds cavorting around the Crocosmia. "They'll forget you're there, and come charging down out of the sky to feed on the flowers," he told me.
He'd been out on the patio for, say... 15 minutes or less when he came in and told me this. I've been trying to capture the little dears on film for, well... forever without much luck. "Oh good," I said, "I'll sit with my camera!"
"Come on," said he, "They know what a camera is."
Dave seems to think it was funny how, for 20 years or more, I've been running for the camera whenever I see the approaching flutter. I used to think it was funny would disappear whenever I returned to take their photos. But now, not so much. I picture them sniggering into their little hummingbird wings as they hover around the corner where I can't see them.
So hummingbirds---if you're reading this now---I've officially given up. I won't have photos of you poised in mid-air as you coax nectar from a bloom. I'll assume you are in the witness protection program, and reign in my penchant for bad paparazzi behavior.
I don't by any means consider myself a "photographer." However I imagine that capturing a hummingbird's close-up portrait is one of those things that separate the National Geographic-caliber photog from the grip and grin dilettante.
What I'll have to console myself with today is a Great Spangled Fritillary on a coneflower. Butterflies are a lot easier to catch on film than those wily hummingbirds.
So if patience is short and your husband and the resident hummingbirds are conspiring against you, set your sights on a more accommodating butterfly. They seem to know that, once you get a couple of decent shots, you'll leave them alone.