Caught in the Stillness of Flight
Hummingbird Spa Residents
This spring, guests and employees of Glen Ivy Hot Springs enjoyed a special delight, as they joyfully kept watch as an Anna’s Hummingbird built her nest in a tree branch that loftily reaches over the Spa’s Sauna Court. The tiny bird, affectionately named Hazel, wove her cone-shaped nest from spider webs, grasses and other plant materials. The thimble-like nest sat snuggly at the fork of a tree branch and is lined with downy, soft plant material to allow it to expand and grow as the hummingbird chicks end their 16-day incubation and introduce themselves to the world. Although the nest is small (only about 1 ½ inches) and camouflaged, word of the unfolding magic on the Sauna Court spread quickly amongst employees; those arriving for the early shift often began their day by gazing at the nest as Hazel serenely sat on two small eggs. As guests left the stresses of life behind and entered a space of oneness with the natural environment surrounding them, they too took notice of the little bird; many quietly capturing photos, amazed having never seen a hummingbird not in flight. The delight was multiplied when the two little eggs hatched and all who looked on witnessed Hazel — in the stillness of flight — gracefully hovering just in front of her young, offering the long-billed tiny chicks sweet nectar collected from nearby jasmine and other flowers.
I hope you enjoy this great video made by a spa guest:
As the miracle of life unfolded before us, we were shown that the hummingbird instinctively constructs its nest from materials that allow for the changes that life brings; the spider webs and soft plants of the nest give, bend and morph to the new life that grows within. As we reflect on our lives we can ask if we have done the same –
Have we remembered to leave room for growth and change in our lives?
Hazel’s nest is a reminder that life inevitably changes. If we are wise enough to embrace this truth and allow the places we live — our homes, our places of work, our relationships and our thoughts — to be soft, pliable and available for that change, we will find our lives flow more easily, feel less stressful and less difficult. It’s important to remember that Hazel’s chicks would not have survived had they been born in to a rigid structure with no room for growth. Likewise the beauty of new life, new thoughts and fresh experiences cannot be born to us if we are held up in rigidity. As Hazel fed her offspring, she was caught in the stillness of flight – wings beating at up to 80 times per second – but at her core still, silent, acting and living from innate knowingness. As we move through life, experiencing the stresses of family, relationships, work, money, and all of the other things that keep us in constant mental and physical motion, we often lose the connection to our core – that ineffable, still and silent place within; the place where spirit dwells, creativity flows and our unique beauty, gifts and talents reside
At Glen Ivy, we mindfully cultivate indigenous landscaping and leave room for “wild spaces” where plants and animals can live their lives much as they did centuries ago. These practices are carried out for many reasons – sustainability, a deeps reverence for nature, and to create beauty – but perhaps most importantly, we do this to give our guests and employees the opportunity to remember and reconnect with the quiet, small voice within that, like Hazel the hummingbird, innately knows how to live a life graced with the stillness of flight.
Director of Guest Experience Programming
Glen Ivy Hot Springs