Wednesday, June 16, 2010
The Audrey Bird
Jason strolled through the screen door this weekend after a quick berry check in the backyard. "I think we're going to have a bunch of raspberries in a few days," he said. As in, more than our typical handful. As in, prepare some angel food cake and pull out the whipped cream, or study the cookbooks for a recipe requiring a cupful of berries.
The week progressed. The berries didn't. We were puzzled. Jason could have sworn we'd have quite the little raspberry crop by midweek. I had remembered some promising blossoms. On further examination, we found evidence of the should-have-been berries, picked clean. "Do you think we have a bird problem?" I asked. Audrey, at Jason's hip, quickly agreed with the bird theory as she searched the bush. I looked at the berries again, their red tops plucked clear off, leaving a tidy white center behind. A little too tidy. I began to wonder if birds could do quite as neat a job, as I remembered Audrey's ability to swiftly pick raspberries last year, expertly avoiding the thorns on the full-grown plants. I asked if she had picked them. She said yes. But we were picking berries as we spoke. I asked if birds did it. She said yes. I asked if an Audrey Bird did it. Yes. I didn't know which way was up.
Until today. Today, with me safely tucked away inside folding sheets, I spied Audrey hopping from bush to bush, picking berries and popping them in her mouth. She would adventure in the yard for several minutes, and then (in what I imagine was a moment of appetite found from running about) she would ramble over to a bush, search it, snack, and run right along. She played away the afternoon, visiting each bush in turn as her stomach persuaded her. I can't say I blame the logic. Why stop inside when you have a fruit pantry at your fingertips? Now, how to deter an Audrey Bird?