Then Only…

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Algy perched rather precariously on a sloping ledge beside a strange rock pool and peered into the murky depths. Today was a day of significant political activity in certain parts of what humans called the “western” world, and Algy was wondering what the outcomes might be. As he gazed at the tangled masses of seaweed overshadowed by hard, slippery rocks, he was reminded of a thought expressed by an ancient Greek human being, many, many years ago…

Until philosophers are kings, or the kings and princes of this world have the spirit and power of philosophy, and political greatness and wisdom meet in one, and those commoner natures who pursue either to the exclusion of the other are compelled to stand aside, cities will never have rest from their evils – nor the human race, as I believe – and then only will this our State have a possibility of life and behold the light of day.

[Algy is quoting from Book V of Plato’s The Republic, written around 360 B.C.]

All Day Ebb and Flow

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On a fine but decidedly chilly spring day, Algy perched on a mass of slimy seaweed, watching the tide come in. He was intrigued by the increasing flow of clear water through a sandy channel between the rocks. With each tiny wave the ripples advanced a little further and the drying seaweed got a wee bit wetter and more colourful again. Algy knew that in a few moments more he would have to hop into the air, if he didn’t want his legs and tail feathers drenched with salty water, and he wondered just how long he could wait… He was reminded of a haiku by Buson:

The spring sea
all day ebb and flow
ebb and flow

Algy wishes you all a beautiful, calm and peaceful weekend xoxo

[Algy is quoting a translation of a haiku by the 18th century Japanese master Yosa Buson.]

Peace in Diversity

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Algy found a damp perch in the cold sunshine, and studied his surroundings. He was intrigued by the diverse patterns and colours of the seaweed-covered rocks, and the ever changing wavelets on the sand, created by the constant trickling of the wee burn which was trying to find its way across the beach to the sea. It reminded him of all his friends in diverse places around the world, from many different cultures and countries – some in the sunshine and some in the darkness, some in the cities and some in the countryside, some struggling with problems in their lives and some flowing happily along…

Algy hopes that you will all have a happy and peaceful Easter holiday weekend, and he sends you all lots of very special fluffy hugs xoxoxo

By a Rock Pool…

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The next day brought no change in the weather: the outside world, if it still existed, was lost somewhere beyond a never ending mass of dense Scotch mist. Visibility was reduced to a few hundred yards at best, and the small part of the world which seemed to remain was blurry and grey.

Algy flew down to the sea, and gazed in the direction where the islands should have been… but as there was nothing out there except a pale, wet fuzziness which drove in among his feathers with surprising force, he decided to find a sheltered spot among the rocks and focus on his more immediate surroundings instead. Even when the rest of the world had vanished, there was plenty to see in the rock pools, so Algy perched on a cold, damp rock at the edge of a pool and spent a happy if damp and chilly half hour watching the tiny creatures beneath the surface going about their daily business…

Algy flew back to the big beach, where the waves rolled in with great enthusiasm, tossing the seaweed and shells around on the sand to create ever-changing patterns. The beach sloped very gently here, and Algy loved to sit near the water, waiting for the waves to come and tickle his toes as the tide rolled in. Sometimes an unusually big wave caught him by surprise and he got a great deal wetter than he intended, but it was all part of the fun 🙂

Storm Gertrude had officially passed over, but in Algy’s opinion the weather was not exactly improving. The human households around his home had been without power for 15 hours, while sleet, hail and snow was driving in from the ocean and across the hillsides on severe gale force winds from the north-west. It was not a fit day out for man nor beast. And for those who were not enjoying this storm, another one just like it was arriving on Monday…

Birds don’t require electricity, of course, but even birds like to keep warm and fluffy, and that was becoming increasingly difficult.

Keep your heads down, everybody… here comes another blast!

Although it was only November, there had been several winter gales over the past two weeks, and the sandy beach was already covered in seaweeds torn up from the sea bed by the storms. The rotting seaweed did not smell very nice, but Algy didn’t mind, because many of the other birds loved to forage among it.

Algy wishes his American friends good foraging today too, and a very happy Thanksgiving to all those on the far side of the ocean he is staring at 🙂