Yesterday, November 5, was my grandson Joseph's birthday. It was also the day when the mother of my dearest Turkish friend died. I can derive no great philosophical insight from these simultaneous events, but there is a kind of symmetry there.
Today, November 6, out on Barn Owl business with my colleague Peter, we had a day when not only did everything go right, but we also had a couple of moments that were truly memorable.
The first was meeting a feisty lady who is now effectively the boss of a 1000-acre farm. She and her family have done amazing things to make the farm wildlife-friendly, a gorgeous mix of copses and hedgerows and ponds and beetle banks and field verges and headlands: without doubt, an ideal place for Barn Owls. We surveyed the area with her and found sites for three boxes. I have no doubt that within a mere lustrum, she will have twenty boxes up.
The second was a meeting with a man who wanted us to put up a Barn Owl box for him. We had not met him before, but were glad we did, because he has an enterprise to introduce some wonderful Cotes du Rhone wines to Britain, wines that are not available elsewhere. After inviting us to taste a couple, he then gave us two bottles each, plus a very interesting looking white wine for Peter's wife. Such a generous act.
The third was the beauty of the Autumn landscape as we drove through the fens, a riot of coloured leaves and rich red berries. We stood for a while after putting up a Kestrel box on a Poplar and watched the leaves raining down around us. Good karma.
I hope Joseph had a good birthday down there in Auckland NZ, and I know that my lovely Turkish friend will be happy that I had such a good day today despite her own personal sadness.
Not much else to say: every day of our lives is like this, good moments and bad moments, and we have to learn to expect neither and cope with both.