Monday, June 12, 2006


If there's one thing I adore about England, it has to be their robins. They are the most vivacious, adorable, lively birds I've ever seen, and I've spent many an afternoon gazing out the window between note-taking as the resident pair scours my garden for the seed I scatter.

These robins are much smaller than ours and much more endearing. When the male in my garden found a mate, he engaged in typical courtship behavior: selecting the most appealing seed, raisin or mealworm and hopping back to his mate to place the food in her waiting beak. He sang to her on top of the garden wall, and she sat down and swayed back and forth slowly, as though completely entranced in his song. It was possibly the sweetest thing I've ever seen.

I'm not the only one to be smitten by these puffball-sized birds. Frances Hodgson Burnett was as well, and she tells her story here.


Anonymous said...

I just have to say, your mention of mealworms reminded me just how much I hate mealworms. They're disgusting. Peter and I, in the grand tradition of couples purchasing reptiles that you initiated, got a turtle. I prefer feeding him crickets, but Peter has a thing for mealworms. Yuck. And the thing is, the turtle won't even eat the mealworms and leaves their little bodies at the bottom of his tank. Truly awful. How any animal could find a mealworm to be an appealing source of food is beyond me. Then again, I tend to feel the same way about okra, so maybe I don't have the most openminded perspective when it comes to these things...

-- Your Stanford chum, who is currently suffering from sleepless weekdays in NY

Meg said...

Hey there! What kind of turtle do you have?? Has Victor paid it any attention? We knew we couldn't leave Leo and Ndugu together unsupervised because you never know with dogs and tortoises (lots of horror stories out there about how well they got along until that one day...), but we did let the two out in the backyard when we were close by, and Leo just kept looking at Ndugu. You could tell he was thinking, "What the @$% is that??"

Sorry to hear about the no-sleep routine. I can sympathize, particularly right now!