I like birds. I really do. I love to watch them in their natural environment and I especially love spotting unusual-to-me birds. As spring hits Canada, I know that the sounds of chirping birds must be back in full force. I saw a robin before I left Toronto last month and for many that first robin sighting truly marks the beginning of the season.
Well, there are no robins in Australia and, as I’ve already lamented, we won’t have an Australian spring for some time. But there are birds! Lots and lots of interesting birds.
I tend to look up as I walk through the city. There’s some incredible architecture in Adelaide and around every corner is a beautiful tree. Andrew is not the most helpful when it comes to identifying species, though he seems to always know whether it’s a native or introduced tree, but I am happy to admire ignorantly. Plus, these interesting trees are full of bird calls I’ve never heard before and I like to put a face to the voice, so to speak.
As we were finishing a walk this weekend, we turned a corner and were nearly home when from down a side street came a call I recognised but had never heard in the wild before.
Sure enough, when we adjusted our eyes to the tree’s darkness, we found that it was full of rainbow lorikeets. Parrots! That’s something you just don’t see in Canada and I could have watched them for hours. They were eating berries and flitting from branch to branch and tree to tree. I can’t tell you what kind of berries because, as previously mentioned, my tour guide is not an expert in Australian flora.
Many things about Adelaide feel Canadian to me. Many, many things feel different, of course, but there are so many similarities that if I don’t concentrate too hard I can forget for a while that I am somewhere completely foreign. Peugeots; parrots; trips to the supermarket: these things serve to remind me that I’m not in Canada any more.