Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Disputed territory, maze, swifts

From our bedroom window this morning I see two male blackbirds on the roof opposite. One has a loose feather sticking up on his breast. It is clear that they are in dispute. One sits on top of the roof; the other challenges his position. Suddenly they both take off and clash in mid-air before descending to land separately. This continues for most of the morning.

The terrace at the back of Sankeys pub/restaurant has new tables and chairs. Very smart and popular in this fine weather. The only problem is that they are too close together. Finding your way to your table is difficult for customers and staff, especially when customers, in an expansive mood, push their chairs back. It really is a sort of maze and requires skill to calculate the best way through, and it's fun to watch others, once you have your seat.

Sitting outside, I hear the screaming of swifts for the first time this summer. I look up and see, flying high, two swooping and tilting over Tunbridge Wells. Far, far above them is passenger jet looking half their size.

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