The rain of the past three days let up this afternoon, and Bunty and I took a stroll up the lane. The woods are fully in leaf now, and the chestnut trees are scattering the confetti of their blossoms across the tarmac, lacing the air with their honey-like scent. Blossoms are not all they are scattering. I found this blackbird nest lying at the side of the road, soaked in rainwater.
I picked it up, thinking our artist neighbour might like it. She collects items from nature for sketching and painting.
“Do you want the egg as well?” asked Bunty, pointing out a turquoise speckled object nearby. I picked it up, wondering if it could be kept alive by incubation. But it was badly cracked.
I took them both to the artist’s house, but she was out, so I sat by the wildlife pond for a little while. I contemplated the egg in my hand. It was cold. It didn’t seem to be seeping any fluid, however. I flipped up the jagged piece of shell at the tip, and saw a fully-formed beak beneath. Was the bird alive or dead? I didn’t know.
I tucked it into my cleavage, as that seemed the safest warm place to keep it until I figured out what to do next, and I returned to the cottage. In need of advice, I began this blog entry. I pondered the possibility of knocking up an incubator. I have fireglow bulbs, a clip-on lamp, a reptile heat pad, a microwavable heat pad for pets, thermometers, and a collection of vivariums with lids.
Remembering that blackbirds have regional accents, and ones bred in isolation have pathetic songs, it occurred to me that, if it hatched, I would have to teach it to talk. I can imitate the basic warbles of a blackbird pretty well, so I felt I could at least cover its primary education. After that, I’d have to take it outside regularly to listen to the local blackbirds. I didn’t want my blackbird to be a social outcast.
I checked my cleavage to make sure the egg was still in position. It wasn’t. I rummaged around in my bra trying to find it, and couldn’t. My bosom is so big that I actually lost an egg in it. I had to peel off all my clothes, very carefully, to find it again. I wear a lot of layers, and it took some time. The egg finally revealed itself after I turned my innermost top inside out over the bed. It rolled out, looking as conspicuous as hell and like there was no way I could possibly have lost it.
It not only looked conspicuous; now that it was nice and warm, it smelled conspicuous. My question as to whether it was dead or alive was answered. My heat pads can stay in storage for another day, and I need a shower.