I have just spent a delightful night with old friends in the Blue Mountains In Australia. Yes I am in the Antipodes this time. The lure of the grandchildren again! I have never been into birds or ornithology but for once I have to make an exception. I have met a bird that I have fallen in love with. It is called a Bower Bird.
This extraordinary blue-black coloured bird is a comedy character… but he is also extremely handsome. In fact I would go as far as saying… beautiful. He has magenta eyes and is romantic in extreme. The Bower Bird is tenacious, loud, has brilliant comedy timing and a penchant for blue… only blue.
In fact this bird has all the ingredients that I like in men. How many males do you know that have a pad solely for love-making? The Bower Bird spends hours building his. It is tastefully built, using long and delicate sticks and, of course, it has a very private section in the middle. Once built the Bower Bird flies off to see what he can spot to steal for the interior decoration of his – excuse the pun – his love nest!
He only likes blue. It’s strange that! Have you ever noticed that pretty well every male likes blue. This particular Bower Bird, who has totally captured my imagination, has managed to pinch all the blue plastic pegs off my friend’s washing line. How he got them off the line is a mystery. He knows the difference between light blue and dark blue and perfectionist that he is, he only selects the light blue pegs. You would think he had gone to Cambridge!
What I really like about the Bower Bird though, is that he is a perfectionist. In all matters of love and seduction. If the Bower is not entirely to his taste – and this can change according to his whim – he will knock it down and start all over again. He is inclined to hissy fits but I put that down to his artistic temperament. In fact, if he is feeling really creative he may rebuild two or three times before it passes muster.
The next thing that he does is call. In bird-speak this means “I’m ready, horny, and come and get me!”
It is not a shrill, excited call, more of a deep-throated growl followed by a whistle. I can best describe it as a Lee Marvin growl followed by a builder’s whistle (of course you younger readers won’t know what a builder’s whistle is!) Like so many things that have to be PC the builder’s wolf whistle has disappeared. I rather liked it. In fact in my earlier days if I walked past a load of builders on a site and wasn’t whistled at I would be quite miffed.
The Bower and the Bower bird are ready. The anticipation. The excitement. Will a beautiful lady bird arrive? At this moment he becomes very private and so he should be. Let me just say I like his technique. And if there is any nice guy out there who would like to build me a bower I would be delighted. Blue is my favourite colour!
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