I first noticed the straw strewn along the door mat at the entrance to our office building a week or two ago. I thought the mess odd because the maintenance crew spends hours upon noisy hours blowing every bit of stray matter away from the building.
It’s a historic old stone farmhouse with nooks and crannies galore—inside an out. It’s drafty, oddly (but solidly) constructed, and has itty-bitty doorways and steep stairways. It full of character, charm, and craftmanship you’d never find today. I love it.
The birds do, too. The farmhouse offers myriad places to tuck a nest, usually with little to no disturbance from humans.
But this year, one persistent, but clearly stupid, robin keeps constructing a nest on top of the hinge of the main entrance to the building.
Because I start at 7 a.m., I’m almost always the first one at the office most mornings and, so, I’ve been the one destroying his nest day after day.
Friday, I arrived to find Mr. Robin had been working his tail off all night and morning. His nest was half constructed once again and, then I noticed him watching me from a nearby bush with a mouthful of nest makings.
I’m telling you, this bird is breaking my freaking heart.
I carefully picked up the half nest and held it out to Mr. Robin and hoped he was watching me as I set it on the top of a window shutter around the corner where I’m pretty sure he built his home last spring.
He didn’t buy into my Robin Relocation effort. I arrived Monday morning to find a fully constructed nest atop the door hinge.
I couldn’t destroy it. Not again. Not at this stage in the game.
I went in another door. There are plenty in this old farmhouse. At least seven, in fact. I know because last year when they redid the stone walkways surrounding most of the building, we were constantly redirected to different entrances.
I knew not everyone would go around, but I hoped they would. How long would it take this bird to raise it’s brood? A couple weeks?
Just let the bird be. Put up a sign and designate a new temporary entrance. It’s summer and our students and professors are gone. New student orientation and summer outreach programs haven’t started. The campus is a virtual ghost town right now and will be till Mid-June when Mr. & Mrs. Robin would have an empty nest again.
But I arrived back from lunch (having gone out the other entrance) to find the nest knocked to the ground, lying upside down. I didn’t have the heart to turn it over and see if there were any eggs.
About Just Write: Just Write is my adaptation of free writing, a technique in which a person writes continuously and quickly without little regard for spelling, grammar, or topic. It helps writers overcome blocks of apathy and explore everything from meaningful topics to mundane observations with the same effort and without the pressure of crafting perfect prose. I just start writing.
“What ends up revealing itself when free writing is that everything has meaning. That is a magnificent gift of writing. If we write from a free heart-gut place, our souls start speaking.”