The latest bee-in-our-bonnets is to keep Zebra finches again
We had an aviary at our previous home and learned to love these chatty cheery little birds.
My man set about building a place for them with his usual diligence
The finished product was lovely, with plants in troughs, feeding trays, a spacious bird bath, a well shaped small tree stump planted firmly in the trough and the best bit - a dried shrub - roots and all - hanging from the top of the cage just asking to be used as a nesting spot.
I bought the pair of Zebras for my man's birthday
The pet shop's assistant did her best but terrified them with her catching efforts
They flew from one end of the small cage to the other in a frenzy of fear
Eventually she grabbed a pair, placing them in a paper bag with a few holes in it.
The bag was absolutely silent and unmoving on the seat next to me in the car on the way home
So much so that I was worried that the birds had died of fright.
They had to wait in that little bag for a while since I wanted the birthday boy to free them into the aviary he had so painstakingly made for them.
He was thrilled with his new little charges
And couldn't wait to shake them out of the bag and into their new world.
It was quite comical to watch them
At first they had no idea how to fly in such a big space
But they quickly gained confidence and expertise
And its a joy these days to watch how happy they are there
They have already built a woven nest in the hanging shrub
And the first white oval egg lies in its depths.
And I thought, as I tend to do, about how this too, could be a parable:
How often may I have feared things because I didn't understand that they were necessary steps on the way to something better.
I am learning that if things are restricting, dark or fearful, they may well just be steps on the way to something good, that lies just outside my vision.
Maybe it doesn't make the scary bits easier but does bring bright hope to them.