Sunday, September 1, 2013

Spring has sprung...

... and where better to enjoy the first day of spring than at the beach? Muriwai Beach, in fact, a surf beach on the west coast with long rollers, black sand and cliffs where gannets nest. "Nest" is pushing it a bit: what they actually make is a scrape on top of a low mount of dirt softened by bits of grass glued in place with guano. Not exactly 5-star, but it works for the gannets, who have been gradually expanding their nesting area over the years - nice change, to hear that.

That's a gannet at the top of this blog, by the way, photographed right at this spot as it glided just overhead. Everybody had cameras there, of course, snapping away at each other as well as, the ones with big lenses, at the birds - but there was one couple (and I'll leave it to you to guess their nationality) who marched up to the best lookout and then spent a good five minutes photographing each other. He was in charge, demanding that she take and re-take his photo as he stood not smiling at her but gazing seriously off at an angle into the mid-distance, until finally he was satisfied with his portrait. But still he wanted a phone pic to supplement the big Canon ones. Then he deigned to snap off a couple at her, before they slung their stuff back over their shoulders and, he striding ahead and she scuttling behind, they walked away.

Without even glancing once at the gannet colony, the waves breaking at the base of the cliffs or the shiny blue sea stretching off towards the horizon. All this fabulous nature - and they didn't even look at it! Perhaps though it was a good thing, because if they'd spent any time at all watching the paired birds delicately rattling their beaks, twining their necks together and carefully grooming each other's heads, clearly delighted to be together again after the long winter apart, they (she) might have got a bit envious of such a loving, life-long and equal partnership.

2 comments:

the queen said...

They were Americans, weren't they. We send just the worst people overseas.

Pamela Wade said...

I have to say, I know exactly what you mean - though I have met many very nice Americans too. But in this case, no, they weren't from the US. The selfie is the clue. Anyone?

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