I’ve been able to sit in the garden quite a lot in the last few days, sometimes working, but always with binoculars at hand.
At other times, I would hear planes overhead, cars on the road, school children on their ways to and from school, and at break-times in the not-too-distant school playgrounds. There would be an ice-cream van jingling to coincide with the retreat from school and sometimes a van looking for ‘any-old-iron’ with a loudspeaker to advertise its presence.
Those sounds are mostly gone. Yes, an occasional car but not the background hum there used to be, and the school children have gone to be replaced by the occasional sound of children playing in nearby gardens, but they seem quite quiet and not very noisy children.
I have to say – I quite like the change.
And it does allow the bird song to come through louder and clearer than usual. Aren’t there a lot of pigeons and doves in the world? There are in mine. There is a pair of Stock Doves nearby and the male was singing this morning – nice! Yesterday I gave a sharp glance to a Woodpigeon that was being particularly noisy.
I’m connecting with nature in a more local way than usual this year – it’s fun. I don’t mind that at all. I wonder whether the pair of Long-tailed Tits are nesting on my patch or just very close and I will find out in the days ahead, no doubt. The Blackcap that sang briefly on Tuesday morning two weeks ago hasn’t been seen or heard since – is he now singing in Bonn, Berlin or further east? Are those Starlings carrying nesting material or food into that nest hole – I’ll see. When will the first Orange Tip be seen – the Jack by the Hedge is growing well for them. I would expect to see my first Beefly around now – I’m looking out for them. And listening too.
There is silence, but not silence.