Waiting and Watching

Waiting and watching. Two simple words that can mean so many different things to so many different people and it all depends on what they are waiting and watching for.

Life is full of periods of waiting and watching. I can vividly remember those days decades ago where as a young student I sat waiting and watching a classroom clock struggling to reach 3 PM. I still smile as I remember a day 42 years past as I stood expectantly waiting at the altar of a small church watching for my beautiful bride to enter the sanctuary. I remember the nervousness of watching and waiting during the last few days of pregnancies. A tear still comes as I recall the time of waiting and keeping watch while praying and pacing outside my dear mother’s hospital room. Periods of waiting and watching are necessary for life. Time and expectation are precious commodities.

The leafy boughs of the giant sycamore have all but concealed Jim and Hope’s Treetop Palace as viewed from our vantage point at Eastwood Lake where we watch and wait. The two eaglets within the palace’s open cradle are watching and waiting too. Mostly they watch and wait for food… a lot of food. Their aquatic diet provides nutrition and almost all of their water needs as the eaglets grow in both size and impatience. Mom and Dad are giving the young ones more space these days. We are only a month from fledging time and young muscles need to be exercised and strengthened making more space a real necessity.

Watching and waiting does not mean idle and bored though. Wildlife stories are playing out all around the park as animals watch and wait for future events. This young buck has sprouted new velvet in anticipation of establishing his place in the Whitetail herd.


An Eastwood Pileated Woodpecker nest has revealed at least 3 young (2 females and a male) watching and waiting for their parents’ frequent food delivery service. Dad Pileated feeds the hungry babies while watching and waiting for a well deserved break. Mom Pileated was watching and waiting for more tasty morsels to crawl her way.







Some animals, like this raccoon, are just watching and waiting for nightfall, fun and mischief.


During this season of watching and waiting there are other changes afoot. The construction of the new Harshman Road bridge over the Mad River that flows through the greater Eastwood complex is almost complete. The new span will provide both vehicular and pedestrian passage. I was able to attend a public input session that Five River MetroParks hosted focusing on the future of the Eastwood complex. The current plans call for closing the entrance road to the lake after another new bridge is built across The Mad River within the park. Also included in the plans are a 5K path around the lake, new restroom facilities, new children and adult activity areas, new hiking trails, rerouting the bikeway through the park, dredging and cleaning the lagoons, an increase emphasis on kayaking opportunities and training, dock improvements and other enhancements. As Jim and Hope’s representative I encouraged the MetroParks staff to respect and protect the western shoreline of the lake where as many as a dozen juvenile Bald Eagles roosted last December and we discussed the possible inclusion of an elevated platform to allow Treetop Palace viewing over the Harshman Road traffic.

As the warm, wet days of springtime give way to the hot, humid days of summer our eaglets will find new freedom, Jim and Hope will find more time to soar and eagle-watchers and their cameras will find more excitement from the hours spent watching and waiting.

Published in: on May 22, 2017 at 9:40 pm  Comments (5)  

5 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Jim-thanks so much for the information. I really enjoy reading the info and your writing style. thanks again mark d.

  2. Love, Love Love!!!! Thanks for putting a smile on my face!!

  3. Thanks for your great description of our wildlife at Eastwood. We are so lucky to have our little Nature Center in the midst of our community. Great idea for viewing platform.

  4. I am so excited that the Pileated woodpecker pair has found a home closeby. The old Forest woods around the area are perfect nesting places. Keep ’em coming!

  5. Thank you, Jim, for the update. It’s been a while since the last post & I have been wondering about the Eastwood eagles. The pics of the Park’s other wildlife is appreciated too!

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