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Tony Grist

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Feed The Birds! [Oct. 1st, 2004|09:43 am]
Tony Grist
I drew the bedroom curtains this morning and four or five small birds flew up from the second feeder I've hung over the front door. I came down to the kitchen and saw sparrows and blue-tits hopping about in the eucalyptus tree- location of feeder #1

Operation Feedthebirds is a success!

I'm half way through Virginia Woolf's Between The Acts, her last novel. Compared to most of the earlier ones, it's an easy read. What she's trying to do is say something affectionate and positive about England on the brink of WWII (it's set in 1939). If I've a criticism it's that it's a bit too starry-eyed. But lets not carp. It's charming and delightful and I love you, Ginnie!

The story- insofar as there is a story- is about a pageant that the village people are putting on to entertain the nobs. Queen Elizabeth I features prominently. I remember watching a pageant in my home town of Croydon sometime in the late '50s and Queen Elizabeth came into that as well, entering on a white horse with a page-boy/girl holding the bridle. I guess that must have been one of the last pageants ever staged anywhere.

Woolf's England has vanished. But there are all sorts of things in the book- tricks of speech and manner and little spasms of prejudice and snobbery- that bring back my boyhood. My mother had a friend not wholly unlike the over-assertive and over-sexed Mrs Manresa, "the wild child" who overrides the rules of this rather stuffy society and gets away with it by sheer force of charm and character. I counted up on my fingers and was a little shocked to realise that 1939 is only 12 years before I was born.

Here's one of Ginnie's wonderful similes: "She had been waked by the birds. How they sang! attacking the dawn like so many choir boys attacking an iced cake."
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: besideserato
2004-10-01 02:44 am (UTC)
Oh, congratulations on the success of the feeders! That must be such a wonderful sight in the mornings! If only the birds that lived around here didn't prefer fish to birdfeed, I would make a lot of feeders all around my house!

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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2004-10-01 03:01 am (UTC)
Could you not put some sort of fishy stuff in the feeders?

One of our feeders contains a gloptious mix of seeds and insects in fat.
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[User Picture]From: besideserato
2004-10-01 03:06 am (UTC)
Wouldn't that smell a little... fowl?
Ha ha! Pun!
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2004-10-01 03:56 am (UTC)
Nice one!

No, I guess it wouldn't work out. And it would upset the neighbourhood cats no end.
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[User Picture]From: besideserato
2004-10-01 03:59 am (UTC)
{Smiles] I will check with Fish and Wildlife and see whether I can find an alternative. I'll let you know. And take some pictures to share with us!
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2004-10-01 04:02 am (UTC)
I'll do that. The problem is going to be creeping up on the feeding birds without them seeing me.
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[User Picture]From: besideserato
2004-10-02 05:57 am (UTC)
Oh, do the whole Dancing with Wolves bit where you gradually approach them over time until they think nothing of it! Sure, it will take a while, but imagine how nice it will be to have them fly right to your shoulder or feed directly from your palm?

Am I being a total idealist now or what?
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[User Picture]From: mtl
2004-10-01 07:28 am (UTC)

thank you

for this nice posting!
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[User Picture]From: jackiejj
2004-10-01 02:20 pm (UTC)
I'm happy that your birds have arrived. You should have a colorful winter.

And I enjoyed hearing about your village pageant.
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