Elaine’s picture of a heron today
This evening, as I was cycling through Hyde Park, just by the Serpentine, a fellow cyclist asked to borrow my pump, because his back tyre was flat. We talked while he pumped, then I got back on and was just beginning to pedal uphill when an enormous heron flapped gently right over my head and then headed north by north-west across the water, against the most radiantly romantic sunset. A truly magic moment, partly because of my long-standing belief in the heron as a personal talisman and partly because the giant heron is one of the animals thought to have inspired the myth of the phoenix.
Reminded me of the time when I was standing still, on my own, in the garden beyond the barn at Little Rissington, watching flights of swifts and swallows overhead – and then a hawk, a hobby, powered by, clipping my ear-lobe with its wing-tip as it sped on the low part of a power climb towards its prey.
In any event, I took the heron as a sign that conversations we started today at Volans may be headed in the right direction. And fortuitously, though I didn’t have my camera to hand at the time, Elaine captured another of the birds today on Barnes Pond.