Only a day into my glorious resolution to follow the Wildlife Trusts’ advice and do something wild every day in June, I blew it. Well, mostly. It was as if the resolution had called down work from all corners of the globe, and a self-employed writer has to go with the flow.
So I wrote apiece for an American er, soccer magazine, then a piece about virgin birth for the Daily Mail and finally a piece about the departure of Seep Blatter for The Spectator website. I felt like a debutante complaining of the inconveniences she suffered from young men falling in love with her. All of which was gratifying and remunerative – but a little short on wildness.
So Eddie and his mother Cindy went and did some wild stuff on the banks of the Chet River while I stayed at home, thumped a keyboard and looked for synonyms for corruption.
It was getting late when I finished work for the day and went out to feed the horses. And as I was doing so, I saw a darker shape against the darkening sky: a swallow sliding full-pelt down a shallow slope of air. He was heading for the stable at such breathtaking pace I thought he must crash beak-first into the back wall.
He performed a full-throttle jink around the lovely spotted head of Loki the Appaloosa, entered through the open top-door and vanished with that joyous double-note that swallows use to announce their arrival back at the nest, cramming on the airbrakes to stop on a dime and make a controlled stall onto his chosen perch. So even on a day in which I felt I had written most of War and Peace a little bit of wild intruded and lightened my load.
Wildness can do this in even the most unpromising circumstances.
Here’s Eddies account of his rather more protracted wild encounter of the day.30 days wild2