The Owl and the Pussycat
And other nonsense.
I, like so many others, have done the vast amount of my recent nature observation from the windows of our home. Here, in the west of Alentejo, even on the fourth floor, sometimes nature also tries to bring itself closer to us. Butterflies lay their eggs on our salads and nasturtiums, Moorish geckos hide behind the plant-pots, tiny spiky dragons, who would not surprise me if they hiccuped smoke. Birds have been known to fly in and then out again, sometimes pausing on the open bedroom window and depositing tiny calling-cards on the floor. In the corner of the kitchen sits a fat, elegant spider, high up and patient. She is well fed, for this corner, above the door to the balcony, is where the insects rise and where, subsequently, a constant rain of desiccated corpses falls to the floor. This is not a bad thing, even spiders need love and feeding and, to be honest, I prefer them to mosquitoes who, in turn, love me.
We have managed to install a magnetic bug screen in the bedroom, which is rather wonderful, as it means we can leave the window open and let the cool evening air replace the heat of the day. As a welcome bonus, it also enables me to stand in the dark, looking out at the view at night, inhaling the scent and hearing the voices of the night-shift.