Dorothea Dix Park in Raleigh grows a large sunflower field every year that attracts hundreds of bugs, birds, and people taking family portraits with their dogs. Also a great many bird photographers, who all appear to have gear twice as large as mine which probably costs as much as a car. I set aside my finances and do the best work I can with my artistic prowess and stealthy shuffle.

While the field looks beatiful at beak bloom, it's not yet ripe for the birds to come pick out the seeds. Patience is required as it's never a definitive date when the goldfinches decide It Is Time. Once they get out there, though, the flowers start to deteriorate fast. Not due to the birds, but just because that's when they happen to be the most delicious. Long after humans stop coming out, the birds are still there at the all-you-can-eat buffet. This year I went out 7 times over an 11 day period.