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Our flying friend

A mourning dove. Her presence is now a habit. We would open our patio door, to soak in some sun, and sip some coffee, and there she would be, as still as a wax model. We saw her first, when she perched on the railing holding a thin twig in her mouth. Soon, the diligent one built a soft brown nest for herself on the ledge. Whenever we wanted fresh air, we turned the door handle slowly, cautiously, without the slightest squeak, like robbers. Once outside, we whispered, about her, about other things. She eavesdropped openly. It took us  a while to realize she had laid eggs, and was now incubating them. One night, it rained non-stop. Thunderstorms. Heavy wind. Would she be alright? We wondered, plastering our faces on to the bedroom window which faced the patio, and her nest. Next morning, we stepped out, on the wet wooden floor, to see a litter of egg shells. Oh the horror. We imagined the worst. But it was the opposite. The family had grown. There was more than one bobbing head. Our little dove was now a mother, feeding her two chicks. It’s been close to a month, and now, walking around dried drops of bird shit in the morning, is the new normal. We don’t whisper, we don’t sneak out. With hot mugs of coffee in hand, we rock in our patio chairs, talking, laughing, while she and her mate sunbathe sitting on the center table. Fearless, secure and in harmony.

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