River Wissey Lovell Fuller

Runnin' on

May 2001

Searching for the answers, but what are the questions?

Waiting for inspiration of any sort for Runnin' on was getting to be a very long wait this month. The weather was dreary, that meant I could put off gardening, of course the ideal time to sit down and get my mind into gear in front of the keyboard.

Unfortunately that never does work for me, then yesterday a rainbow arrived, the highest, or should it be the tallest rainbow I have ever seen, a beautiful treat on a damp old day, that was enough to get me writing.

"Our" male blackbird has started to strut his stuff on the lawn, he must have decided that Spring has sprung because I saw him fly across the garden with a beak full of twigs and something wriggly. Could this have been his working lunch or is he setting up to charm a partner in the fullness of time? Dried worm as the start of a larder for her.

We found a fallen used nest under the conifer hedge, there were pieces of blackbird eggshell and an empty snail shell in it. I've never seen a blackbird carrying a snail and wonder if large snails would be able to work their way up such a tree. There must be someone who reads the Pump who knows how well snails can slide up trees.

Toby the teenage cat got very excited when he found something unusual on one of his evening walks, the hedgehog wasn't impressed with the tentative pawing and trotted off. We brought Toby indoors and took a plate of cat food out for the hedgehog's supper, I know we'll be moaning shortly when the lawn is littered with hedgehog droppings but we do like to watch the snuffling creatures and hope they enjoy clearing the garden of slugs.

We sit quietly and watch the collared doves in the mornings, they emerge one at a time from the depth of the high branches of the conifers, sit for a minute or two warming up in the sunshine and then fly off. This goes on for as long as we sit watching, we reckon the birds must be going round the back of the trees and repeating the performance. As we can't distinguish one from the other, we have no idea how many birds it takes to amuse us. Simple souls, we are rarely bored though and we may find the answers to everything we ask, given time.

Janet Tilburn

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