I have compiled a list of things that I love and hate about living here in Florence. (Hate might be a bit of strong word but I do find certain things absolutely odious.) Not to dwell on those things, I’ll save them for another post, I have one thing here that I have fallen in love with and will miss dearly.
I made friends with a little bird.
At first I had made friends with a mouse, but I think I accidentally murdered the mouse with cleaning solutions. I know what you are thinking… mice are vile creatures that bring death and filth. Well I beg to differ. There is nothing in my home that could be eaten or crawled on by the little guy*, I think he was just curious. And he never bothered me. I am a great lover of all things living that are incapable of escaping the wrath of humans. (Except mosquitos.) Note here, I am a meat eater. I have tried the vegetarian lifestyle and while I am pretty good about it most of the time, two things I just can’t give up are bacon and sushi, fish in general. If we could go back to a time when we had to hunt and kill our own food I’d probably be a veg for certain. Alas, I do not, and as long as I don’t have to see the atrocities of meat packing plants I will continue to, on occasion, eat meat and fish. I have however, hunted for geese once (not a fan) and caught my own dinner from the ocean so I am not a complete hypocrite. So, as long as the mouse kept to himself I was just fine with it coming to check on me.
You see, in the summer I rarely close my doors, (if I know no humans can get in) so these things do have a tendency to happen. I have a lovely little terrace where I spent most of my time writing and painting and it is very secluded and private, save for my neighbors bathroom window being attached to it. (Yet another post.) And there is the Parco Palazzo Corsini, directly behind me so ‘wild’ does happen here. I have had gecko visitors and mice and lizards and a few parrots. There are also chimney swifts(?) or swallows(?) that fly around my head.
That being said, I have a little bird, a sparrow I think, that has made my kitchen his bird feeder. I first noticed this about 2 months ago when I came home after school and noticed that there was a bird shit on my cutting board. At first I thought I had left some tea leaves laying on it, went to wipe them off and smeared my fingers through green goo. Sounds gross but I just laughed. Then I also noticed as the days went by little birdie poos on the kitchen floor and in various other places in my flat.
In order to keep order, I decided that the best course of action was to start feeding the little guy outside. I usually have old bread and crackers and sometimes cooked rice that I leave on a plate outside. So now I have opened up a birdie restaurant. He is a regular diner and prefers to eat off the pavement than the plate I have prepared for him, so there are bread crumbs everywhere. When I am in my kitchen and he hears me clanging around making something to eat and he comes to investigate. He also enjoys to come in and hop and flit around while I paint. I like to think we are listening to music together and he appreciates my art. He is not afraid of Shane either. He just sort of hangs with us, keeping one eye on my movements and one on the crumbs. Today he was a cheeky little guy and actually followed me into my room where Shane and I were folding the laundry! (Shane does the laundry… haha) I know, I know, I sound like a crazy cat lady. But my days before I leave have become depressing knowing that leaving is only a few more days away, and anything that cheers me up is a plus!
I get a lot of joy from this. He has become my special little friend and I will be sad to leave Florence and not have this relationship any longer. If I’m honest with myself it’s the best relationship I’ve had since i’ve been here. LOL
I can’t help but wonder who will take care of my little friend once I am gone. If I could stay longer, would he eventually let me feed him from my hand? I’d like to think he would and that we will meet again one day.
*I refer to everything in the masculine, probably because everything in my life is male, my kid, my dog, my attitude, etc.