Birdsong…

Despite living in a built-up are, a matter of convenience over personal choice, I am fortunate to be able to hear the birds. When my neighbors are not shouting at each other…

I would love to be able to understand what the song means. I am also amazed by the power and carrying nature of the sound. It makes a place seem physically bigger. It is almost an echo of the primeval forest. The same species, the same songs, would have filled the forests of Britain when there were almost no people to hear them, as the ice sheets melted away and our forefathers carried on a way of life that humans had practiced, with small variations, for two hundred thousand years.

I wonder about those ancient people. We are told they lived the same way for tens of millennia and then suddenly agriculture, then metals and bang we are on the moon. Really? Yes the pace of innovation was slower maybe, but the people must have acquired and preserved knowledge and ways of doing things to make life better, easier, more comfortable. What were those ways? What knowledge have we lost? People must have experimented and adapted in all aspects of their lives, especially as they traveled, following the ice sheets back into new worlds.

It must have been a amazing experience to be the first human to set foot on the continent of America, or to reach Australia. Vast, empty, totally different. Home to strange megafauna, many of which would have regarded humans a light snack between meals. Dangerous, exciting, vast, apparently limitless . It must have been a heady time to be alive. All with the soundtrack of birdsong.

PS. Heard my first cuckoo of the season today, so while I am going crazy locked in, he is going cuckoo out there…

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