Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Adverse Weather Pigeon

I adore snow. My fascination with the white stuff (oo-err, missus!) hasn't waned with age in the slightest. I'm still the first one with her nose pressed to the window, and the first to tarnish the virgin white blanket in the garden with footprints. And I love the utter chaos this weather causes in Britain. It's like the whole country gets brain freeze and temporarily can't remember how to function. I very nearly wet myself when the weather lady claimed that this week, there would be a red weather warning issued. Red warning? Sounds dangerous and a little bit saucy...

And this year - tonight, in fact, I've discovered a new favourite thing about surprise snow: the Adverse Weather Pigeon. I came across several of these normally shy specimen on a walk to the corner shop with A.

The Adverse Weather Pigeon is typically male and only ever makes an appearance when sudden and infrequent weather conditions strike. In this case, a sudden, thick snow fall over Swansea.

The thicker the snow, the more of these critters I was able to witness first hand. As others duck into their warm and soup-filled homes for protection against the downpour, the AWPs strut out onto the street "to have a look at what's going on." Once stationed in front of their homes, the AWPs bob their heads out onto the road, looking for small crashes and tumbles to feed their need to pass judgement and coo it at offending members of the public that didn't have to good sense to remain in their safe doorways like they did. One seasoned (trans: old) male stopped us, ruffling his feathers and alerting us to the "pretend four wheel-drive" struggling pitifully to make its way up the hill behind the real 4x4s. Word of warning: pretend to coo back in agreement. And always. Keep. Moving. AWPs do have a tendency to follow, especially when encouraged.

Hills. This is the preferred habitat for AWPs. Happily nested on a hill, they can fuel their need for mild drama and judgement by disguising themselves as Helpful People when the need arises. At the slightest screech of a tyre, they will dart en masse to the source of the noise, not unlike the common city pigeon at the sound of a bag of bread being opened. Once at the scene, joining the inevitable flock of other AWPs that will already be at there, the AWP will circle the struggling vehicle that is trying and failing to make it up the icy incline, shouting helpful suggestions such as "come on!","if you pump the clutch..." and, my personal favourite "ooh, you shouldn't be driving in this,love...tut tut etc" if it's a woman at the wheel. All the while, despite the chest puffing and strutting, no physical help will be offered.

As A and I walked up the hill home, I had a good inward chuckle about the gaggle of people at the bottom, attacking the poor lady in her car like a leftover lump of Hovis. I would have offered to help her myself, but there were just too many of them. She's probably still out there now...

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