I wake to gun shots, hard smacking blasts again and again. Just barely dawn, the clouds are tufted grey in the eastern sky when I pull up the window shade. Walking into the study, I hear birds calling. I go out on the porch to drink my cappuccino and hear more gun shots, this time from the west. Waterfowl hunting season opened this morning. Black ducks, mallards, wood ducks and mergansers. Canada geese and snow geese. Harlequin ducks appear to be off-limits, according to the Fish and Game website. My house is surrounded by ponds, brooks and a lake, all within a mile, so this is familiar, waking early in the fall, just before sunrise, to gunshots. A goose honks as it flies over the house.