Yesterday was our 25th wedding anniversary and we decided to celebrate with a day of birding at the coast. We never go to the Outer Banks during the tourist season -- it's too depressing with all those people and the horrible traffic. Instead, we head to the Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge during the most desolate time of the year. The refuge is the last remnant of what the Banks used to be like. It is beautiful -- no houses, no restaurants, no putt-putt, no souvenir shops -- just sand and water and wildlife.