I was walking on egg shells this morning. The sun was splitting the skies and we woke to a field full of barnacle geese grazing away. The happy farmer was delighted, as in the winter months ‘goose counters’ travel around the island in a land rover counting the geese in the fields on the various farms.
Today the goose counters were coming our way, and the geese were actually present and correct for once, finally timing their visit to coincide with the goose counters’ visit. The counters call by most weeks. However the geese seem to have this well sussed and appear to take great delight in playing a game of hide and seek with those counters, much to the frustration of the happy farmer. They fly in, a huge black cloud of them, circling in the skies, before swooping down to land in the fields, and always when there are no counters to be seen. They seem to time their tasty bite to perfection, always flying away well before the counters’ land rover cruises up the single track road, or at times choosing not even to make an appearance on the day the goose count is due. In fact those geese seem to have a positive aversion to the goose counters, or so it seems on our farm, and yet those geese hardly bat a wing when I run past through the fields.
I was warned by the happy farmer not to make any noise that might disturb our welcome guests as I left to take youngest to school. I duly opened and closed the front door with great care and warned youngest to be really quiet as we made our way to the jeep. Door quietly closed we crept along the front of the house when suddenly the air was filled with loud squawking and cackling and the din of flapping wings as hundreds of geese flew up from the field and into the sky just as we got ever so quietly into the jeep. Youngest and I looked at one another, me in horror, her with a huge grin on her face. We need not have worried though, those geese were just teasing, merely stretching their wings, as they flew up into the sky, gabbling away, before sauntering ever so gracefully back down into the field once again. I quickly drove off to the school, and on my return the geese were still in place, thank goodness and not too much later the land rover made its way up the single track road and I could at last relax knowing those geese had been counted and were all present and correct, exactly where they were meant to be for the goose counters’ visit.
Until next time....