There was this robin, and what a handsome fellow he was, all puffed up, bright red breast, big time robin. He wanted to show his spouse that he could build her the house of her dreams. He had high hopes and yeah, big ideas.
His first choice of a building site was this tree, this crepe myrtle right outside my daughter’s bedroom window.
Unfortunately the two times he began to build I happened to be in the bedroom putting away laundry. He stared at me, I stared at him, and his mouthful of building materials fell away. Truly, I felt terrible. He flew off despite my plea– “No, come back, Mr. Robin. I swear we won’t bother your babies. This is a great tree for a nest.” But my plea fell on deaf ears.
His next choice was primo, shaded, safe, secure, views beyond compare.
Unfortunately he didn’t realize how slippery a metal drain pipe is. He built a humongous nest. Oh, it was a site to behold! We were in awe. But just as he completed it, the entire nest slipped right off the downspout and landed in my garden.
For an entire day, Mr. Robin studied the situation. He studied and he studied and he studied. He decided he needed to better build a platform on which the nest could rest.
So the next morning I found him carrying long sheets of toilet paper. Clean toilet paper in case you were wondering. He’d obviously found a house that had been tee-peed. He dipped that toilet paper into our birdbath, then flew with it up to the downspout and squished it against the house. Mr. Robin carried sheet after sheet of toilet paper and did his best to provide a stable platform for the nest. And then, splat. Off it slid into my garden.
Oh, the humanity!
We have so many trees in our yard. Usually this particular robin builds a big nest in the huge maple tree. I think this year he wanted to try something new. I felt awful for him because he encountered an engineering problem and it seemed to me he was determined to figure it out. He failed. He flew off with an angry squawk. I’ve since seen him in the birdbath and at the feeder, hopping around the yard. I don’t know were he finally decided to build. But he left his mess for me. I cleaned up all the toilet paper.
But all in all an impressive attempted feat at robin engineering.
We may be in the midst of a drought but it’s been a great year for violets, figs, quinces. My garden is amazing. I’ve got fields of violets. I’ve harvested and dried jars and jars of herbs. I have so much cabbage and celery I can’t give it away. My potatoes look incredible, as does my kambocha squash. My onions and garlic, chilies and eggplants are doing well. The apple tree is full of apples. Two plants are struggling this year – my asparagus, which was so prolific last year we couldn’t keep up with it, and my sour cherry tree. I’m nursing the asparagus along and I’ve cut the cherry tree way back in the hope that I can keep it going.
I’d post photos but you’d be jealous!