One of Riverside Park’s Red-Tail Hawks was spotted in a tree near the tunnel at the 83rd street entrance to the riverwalk. The kids watched in awe, feeling sprited and enlivened by his presence. Why do these wild birds make us so happy? Do they remind us that we can still be free? Yes, but I think it is more complicated than that. It seems more like running into people you haven’t seen in a while. If feels so good to know that the connection is still there despite all that has happened. It is a reminder that the past still lives somewhere even if it is in a memory or a momentarily revived passing connection to an old relationship. We miss our collective past, a time when the natural world was more a part of us. A hawk that thrives in a city like NY supports our belief that that a long lost time can still be a part of who we are.