August 28, 2005 | Category:

Quiet Town, Part 5: Pigeons

There is a museum in a quiet town, next to which there is a stretch of grass that the Crazy Pigeon Woman frequents. It’s not that she is necessarily crazy (no-one has asked), it’s not that she’s a pigeon (of this we are relatively sure), and the fact that she is a woman has little bearing.

The town has pigeons. Lots of them. Flocks, some might say. One particular flock knows where the sweet spot for bread collecting is: it’s on that spot of grass next to the museum. The Crazy Pigeon Woman arrives every now and then with a bag of bread that she throws to the pigeons. The birds, normally frightened of even the slightest human contact, are drawn to her. They cover her blue anorak like she is a statue, they know she is not a threat.

She has named many of them. A pedestrian walking past will no doubt here her call out to them by name, and one or more will respond. She feeds them, they go back to the flock. Who this women is and why she does this is unknown. That she cares is laudable, that she named them is worrying.

Pigeons, strangely loved in a quiet town.