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Thursday, July 18, 2013

Bird Encounter

"Cheep, cheep, cheep!"

The robin ran as it cheeped at me, trying to keep a modest 3 feet ahead of my steps.

A young 'un, I thought. An older wiser bird might have just flown out into the bushes. This was a juvenile, not a fledgling, maybe a few weeks older. "Why are you cheeping at me? Sorry, I don't speak Robinese."

I overtook the robin and continued my steady pace up the road. A small ball of feathers whizzed past me, and there was the robin again, running industriously ahead me, maintaining its original pace.  I froze in place, just to watch what it did. It halted, likewise, turned and started to pick at what might have been a worm, or a dried pine needle on the road.

It looked up at me inquiringly to see if I got the hint. But being a dumb human, I didn't take a cue and attempt to munch on the goodies spread across the asphalt. It attempted to teach me again as I walked on, finally giving up a couple of minutes later, as my strides took me up the hill, and it found new distraction at the base of a bush.

A strange but puzzling encounter. I have never been the attempted object of Robin training before, so this was a first. Could it have been the colors that I wore that morning- a bright red shirt with a touch of white at the neck, and black knit pants? Maybe it thought that I was some kind of a giant baby robin who ran on its two feet instead of flying, and needed training on how to tackle a worm on the ground?

I would love to know what just went on in that little bird brain.