02 March 2010

Up and down, not side to side

Did Goldcliff this morning in the hope that something would be pushed onto the pools in the face of the monster tide; lots of the regulars including 2 Spotted Redshank, 1 Greenshank, 6 Avocet, blah, blah, blah,... oh, and a pair of Peregrine put the fear of [enter fictional deity here] up everything at one point, blah, blah, blah,... I think I'm losing the will to live,... and this is why,...

On pottering back down Boat Lane post high-tide, somewhen between 10:00 and 10:15 (I think, not sure exactly when, am estimating this from a complex back-tracking calculation based on a Morrison's receipt), I peered through the viewing-lattice-thingy and noticed the arse of something large flying directly away from me over the power station (for those who don't tread the paths of Gwent, the distance between retina and bird was circa 3.25 km), I thought "Probably nuffin' special but I'll just put my scope on that", but, of course, you can't peer through the viewing-lattice-thingy with a scope, oh nooooo, so I backed up, opened the tripod and,... nuffin',... absolutely nuffin', empty sky. "Oh well", thought I, "Probably nuffin' (having seen nuffin' this seemed a safe conclusion), forget it" and off I pottered, the bird forgotten, Morrison's bound, a nice slab of Caerphilly and a box of Bran Flakes.

And that's how it would have stayed, and that's how it should have stayed. But nooooo (for the second time today), on getting home I slapped the Apple on, stuck the phone on charge, turned back to the screen and,... BANG! Twitter slays me with "Severnsidebirds Common Crane flew north over Aust Warth at 09.30 !!!!" and suddenly a rushing in the ears, dizzying light-headedness, a slight stumble and I slump, broken, into the office chair. The discarded half-truths swirl, the mind fills the gaps, it was large, very large, long in the arm and hand, heavy bodied, but perfectly arse on, I mean, come on! Give me a flippin' break! Hateful bird, hateful Twitter, hateful interweb, horrid Apple, I hate everything, I hate you all!

I had to phone the county recorder and Weekend birder in search of some twisted ornithological amalgam of confession-penance-contrition-absolution (didn't work). The girlfriend tried to smooth the waters with a "It probably wasn't it" but I know, and I'm going to sulk for days, or slash my wrists, or bury my bins, or have a cup of tea.

[Addendum: with a bit of luck it'll be seen somewhere east of Aust Warth and I can claim it never entered NWR airspace and we can all forget the whole thing.]

[Additional addendum: oh birds, Twitter, interweb and Apple, I love you all, let's never fight again.]

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