Monday, 9 August 2010
Parrots in spring time
Parrots wake me up every morning. They make a PREEEEE-cah-cah-cah-cah sound that drowns out the sparrows and the blackbirds and even the screeching brat on his school holiday next door.
There are thousands of wild parrots in London – they have bright bodies, shiny red beaks and pointy tail feathers. Even though I see them every day I still haven't got over the novelty of having them around and am forever stopping in my tracks and gazing like an idiot up at trees. They are a peculiar addition to the city, sticking out like a green sore thumb. Like seeing monkeys shopping in the Metro Centre. Or tigers sunbathing on Brighton seafront. I imagine they taste far more exotic than the sad, mangy old Trafalgar Square pigeons so would be quite a catch for local cats.
There are different stories about how they ended up living here. My favourite is the one involving Jimi Hendrix releasing a dozen into the wild while on some mad acid trip in the 60s. I’ve also heard some escaped from the set of The African Queen when it was being filmed. But I’m fairly sure the actual reason is the most dull: some flapped to freedom from a bunch of aviaries and found that the temperature suited them – God bless global warming.
I am envious of how they have managed to take to London like a duck to water. But if all I had to do was sit in a tree and warm up eggs, I guess things would have been a lot easier.