Mary vs the Birds: A Reprieve
I learned something new about birds this morning. My earplugs were in, the fan was on, but all experience indicated that despite my preparations I would be woken at the butt-crack of dawn by joyously demented birds singing the praise of the pearl-grey dawn. Which is happening, in these parts, at four a.m.
Even for early-bird me — the irony of that descriptor just hit me as I typed it. Seems I am a laggard early bird, grousing at the end of the line, all the keener birds chittering gaily ahead. Let’s try that again: Even for early riser me, four ghastly ay em is the middle of the night. I do not care if the sky is glowing over there in the east. I do not care that the sun’s pearly fingers are caressing the fading edges of night. I do not care about any of that glorious, pre-dawn shit. I would like to stay asleep for another hour. That’s all I ask. Just another hour. Five is a perfectly acceptable wake-time.
(And for all of you rearing back in horror, you can at least concede that I’m not asking a whole lot. I’m not asking that they hold off for three or four hours. Just one. A mere 60 minutes.)
So this morning I wake — on my own! feeling ready to be awake!! — open an eye and peer at the clock, and find …
It’s 5:06. Whee! And no birds sang.
Whyever not? It’s silent out there. Not one single peep. In fact, it’s strangely, unnaturally still out there. I really don’t believe in that precise an answer to prayer. Even assuming I would pester the almighty with demands for something so incontenstibly against nature and so purely selfish. Which I didn’t. So. It’s not an answer to prayer. (Even though YES!! It IS!!!)
I savour the treat of waking on my own clock for three more minutes or so (normally I leap out of bed when my eyelids flutter delicately open) and then …
a long, loud rumble of thunder.
Well. What do you know? I should probably know this from my camping days. Guess I’d forgotten.
The Dawn Chorus cancels the show for thunder.
Let’s hear it for a long, thunderous summer.
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