Friday, May 06, 2005

Perseverance Pays

Its that time of the year again. When the birds decide to rear a family. I guess they decide on it and then build a nest and then try for a family and then lay eggs, hatch them and rear their little ones. And their success rate must be 100%, no infertility. None has been reported. So far. How else does one explain the self confident tearing hurry and the tremendous nest making activity. Their birdly body clock ticking away loudly inside their tiny bodies.

Back in Kolkata, a group of crows would every year, select a ledge inside our verandah to build their nest despite all sorts of intervention from us – mainly me, (my parents being of the more tolerant variety), and once their babies hatched, they flew away till next year and so they continue, to this day.

Not many Crows around here in Gurgaon. Instead, there are pigeons who make quite a racket, flapping their wings against our bathroom door and throwing up ghostly shadows against the frosted windowpanes. But they keep their family rearing activities out of sight. Not so with the Mynas. One tiny but extremely tenacious pair has decided to use the funnel of our chimney (not the ones which go above a fireplace, but one of those new fangled things that goes over a cooking range) which sticks out of a hole cut into the kitchen window. I was startled by the clanking noises inside the funnel and found out that they had decided to build a nest in it. And being the vicious animal that humans are (should not generalise like this; perhaps its only me), switched on the chimney so that it immediately expelled the pathetic little twigs that they had put in. The minute I switched it off, the birds were back. So back and forth it continued in the morning as I was getting ready to leave for work. I left instructions to have the mouth of the funnel boarded up with some netting. The tiny little birds fought valiantly and pecked our maid Kusum on the arm, and she immediately feigned extreme injury and refused to do any cleaning that day. This morning, they were back again.

Robert Bruce said that if at first you don’t succeed, try and try again. True. The birds haven’t heard of Robert Bruce but they are trying and trying. I can of course be really bad and switch the chimney on after they have built the entire nest. But I wont. Can’t help but admire their tenacity. Soon, a baby myna or mynas will fill the chimney and kitchen with their tiny cheeps.

Perseverance obviously pays.

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