A few minutes ago, as I was sitting here contemplating a pre-prandial dry oloroso, I heard what sounded like a high-pitched road drill out in the back garden. Has some child received an early present, I wondered? and do they do junior pneumatic drills now? It wouldn't surprise me.
I went out to investigate. It was a gang of magpies having a conference, or a war, hard to tell which as I don't speak magpie fluently, in my leafless copper beech. There must be some tasty carrion somewhere nearby. The local red kite flew over, glanced down and wisely decided to keep going. The other birds were keeping their heads down.
Just for fun, I clapped my hands. The magpies must have experienced gunfire or something in the past, because they all scooted off to the next-door-but-one's leylandiia. I counted them out: there were seven. So somewhere out there, there's a secret that can never be told.