M is kind of an animal charmer. Most beasts that cross his path are somehow calmed and soothed by him, in that they do not run away in fear immediately and can usually be coaxed to his hand. The rare exception were our fluffbuckets. The first year we owned our home if they caught us glancing at them they ran away. If we clicked the sliding glass door onto the deck they scurried away out of the yard. No amount of M’s cooing and coaxing to could get them even pause in their fleeing from us. It was as if we were the antichrist in the kitty version of apocalyptic armageddon and extraordinarily frustrating for M, who is accustomed to animals just falling all over themselves for his attention. We had to resort to bribery to get close.
The birds and wildlife in our yard and the greenbelt behind us has been a boon for us. We never used to be into birds, but we have different varieties and have taken to looking them up and can now identify most of the regulars by sight. The barn swallow babies are now out of the nest and regularly seen by us with their parents, so we figured they would soon be moving along to wherever they hang out the rest of the year.
Except last night M heard a ruckus on the deck outside our bedroom. Our lights were still on – I was mostly asleep and he had been catching up with some friends on Facebook – and he opened the shade and the slider to see if was either the cats skulking around or a raccoon making mischief. As soon as he stepped out onto the porch a barn swallow flew in the door and started flying in circles overhead and tweeting. The flapping wings were fanning me from overhead and the frantic tweeting – I couldn’t believe M did not hear it or realize (until I yelled “M! There’s a BIRD flying around our bedroom!”) there was a bird, a dark brown/black bird, flying around near our bright white ceiling.
M comes in and tells me not to panic, it’s just a barn swallow. Hello, you try getting woken up by some wild beastie (even if it’s a tiny beastie) flying around your bedroom and then tell me you would not be alarmed. He is trying to coax it back out the door, I’m watching it fly around and around and imagining bird poo on the bed, in the pile of dirty laundry, landing in one of my shoes, and growing more and more alarmed by the idea. The bird then makes a break for it flying down the hallway and into the main part of the house.
Great. So we get up, turn on all the lights in every room in the house, open every single door leading outside, and hope the poor thing does not run into one of the lowered ceiling pieces or a window and break it’s little neck. We have had it happen – a humming bird flew through the front door and splatted on the back windows not realizing there were windows barring him from a shortcut to the backyard. He died instantly.
Anyway, so it’s midnight and our house is lit up like we’re having a party, the front double doors are open, the back slider, even the breezeway to the garage and the overhead garage door as well as the side door. Still it took 10 minutes and finally a broom to corral that little bird out of our house. But thankfully I found not errant bird poo anywhere.
Nothing like a little wild bird visit to get the blood pumping and heart racing. Unfortunately it was the middle of the night and I had to be up for the day in 5 hours. I think I finally got back to sleep around 2 a.m.
The barn swallow family was sitting in their usual spot on the back fence this morning. I saw no drowsy droop or signs of guilt in any of them. The humming birds were at the feeder and our 3 fluffbuckets were “home” on the deck – one in the kitty bed, the other 2 curled up in padded patio chairs, all sound asleep after a night of adventuring and waiting for breakfast to appear. It makes me smile knowing all is well and normal in our backyard menagerie.