The Owl Adventure

My hubby and I have started birdwatching about a year ago but haven’t had much progress since. Partly because we have not been spending too much time on it but also because we haven’t had the opportunity of getting guidance from an experienced birdwatcher. However, it’s definitely one of our favourite past-times.We recently met a friend who’s really into birdwatching and has offered to take us for a nature walk along a nearby river. I know that there are barn owls near the river but haven’t had much luck everytime we went birdwatching. He told us that he could show us where it was as the owl lived in a very obscure nest-box that not everyone can spot.So there we were, on a Saturday afternoon, setting off to the river in time to catch a glimpse of the barn owl at sunset before it started hunting for food. As we arrived approximately an hour earlier than sunset, our friend thought it was worth showing us around and did a little more birdwatching before we went back to the nest-box.Before we walked further, we caught a look at the nest-box in the telescope which was triangular in shape and was fixed there by some birdwatchers 5 or 6 years back. The barn owl had lived there since.While waiting for sunset, we managed to see a pair of female and male stonechats on our way which are quite rare in Berkshire.At about sunset, we went back to the nest-box. To our amazement, the nest-box was no longer there! We thought it was the most bizarre experience. It was there only an hour ago and had always been there for the past 5 years according to our friend. It was fixed securely at a very high spot on a tree in an open field where rarely anyone could have seen it, let alone taking it down. The whole nest-box was gone and it didn’t fall on the ground. I thought it was one of the most peculiar thing that happened to me in my life. The chances of that happening within the hour when we were about to see our first barn owl. The fact that we saw the nest-box just about an hour before made it even more unbelievable.Sometimes, I don’t think these things happened by chance and yet I couldn’t think of any reason why that had happened. I couldn’t see the significance of the phenomenon but yet, it was almost as though someone was playing a game on us.


“Do we have to recycle?”, a friend asked my friends, who separate out rubbish into two different bags, one for the usual trash and the other for recycling, in the kitchen. Surely no one is legally obliged to recycle. But to actually ask such a question just shows that there are some people who cannot relate the environment to themselves, and how things interdependent. Do people think that human is center to the universe?Considering the blanket coverage by the media about global warming almost everyday, you’d have thought that civilised people should all be aware of how they play a part in this environment. But I suppose awareness alone is just not good enough. I’ve been taught 10 years ago in school about the importance of protecting the environment, so are most people who attended school I assume. However it’s only until about a year or two ago before I started doing some serious recycling, when W found out that the red bin outside our house is for recyclable stuff.Compared to countries like Germany and Austria, UK is really far behind in terms of their commitment to recycling waste. It’s all so evident. Everywhere you go in these countries, there are always recycling bins alongside the rubbish bin. And the bins are clearly labelled. This just makes it so easy for people to recycle, and so little reason not to!I suppose until there is a convenient and obvious way for people to recycle, it is very unlikely this activity will be adopted by the mass.