Mr. Walker is number four in my City Crow Stories book of crow characters — and his life seems to be rambling on much as it has in previous years.
He and his mate Wanda wait for the dog and I each morning. If Mr. W is busy in the alleyway checking out the bins, Wanda will let him know it’s time.
Time to drop whatever he’s up to and get himself into position for the daily gallop alongside the “bringers of the peanuts” to the sacred spot at the foot of the massive cherry tree.
Here he is in action this very morning — showing fine promenading form once he gets neck and neck with Geordie, the dog …
As per usual, he strides/ambles/scampers alongside Geordie, waits for him to have the customary sniff at his tree, and then up onto his pedestal for the peanut payoff.
As is also routine, Wanda, having arrived at the tree via air (I’ve never seen her lower herself to pedestrian pastimes), drops down from the branches above to get in first dibs.
I wrote last summer about the Walkers’ early nesting failure and, though they did seem to be working on a second nest, I think the stress of another hot dry summer led them to just give up in order to concentrate on keeping themselves fed and hydrated.
They went AWOL for the latter part of the summer and imagined them just kicking back in the shade, tiny sunglasses balanced on their beaks, waiting for the cooler weather. Far too hot for any jogging, even for peanuts.
And, indeed, by fall they were back at the appointed spot — Mr. Walker ready, willing and eager to get back into training for the peanut Olympics.
On this occasion, for once, he beat Wanda to the goodies!
The simple reliability of this little daily ritual is strangely comforting — and Mr. Walker’s enthusiastic perambulation technique always brings a smile.
See also: Meet The Walkers (2020)
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