Sunday 26 October 2014

That's the way the cuckoo crumbles...

'Disappointment in reaching an undesired result, with the additional meaning that the result was not entirely an unexpected one'. That's how the Urban Dictionary defines the meaning of 'That's the way the cookie crumbles'. So a very fitting maxim to adapt to describe a failed attempt yesterday to see a Yellow-billed Cuckoo at Porthgwarra in Cornwall, the idyllic Cornish valley which played host to a Hermit Thrush this time last year.
Not choughed: a couple of Cornish Choughs were the highlight of the visit to Porthgwarra. This one was photographed at the Lizard in April.
Credit for the pun, however, goes to Paul Welling, our driver for the venture, who picked me up at a ridiculous hour of the morning en route from Surrey via Southampton where he collected Ant, the third member of our party. We gave ourselves no more than a 50% chance of seeing the Cuckoo, but still deemed it worth a shot given the rarity of this bird.

Getting on for 100 others obviously thought the same as they assembled at dawn on the chilly downs above Porthgwarra, but we all went home empty-handed as it became apparent that the Cuckoo had either moved on or perished. So I was impressed that Paul could still find some humour in the situation, especially as he had also dipped on the bird on Thursday afternoon.

I could not match him for wit on either leg of the journey, mainly as a result of being unconscious: I fell asleep in the comfort of the back seat on the way there and the way back, courtesy of my lucky pillow which last saw action on the American Coot twitch in March. Perhaps I'll leave it at home next time...

No comments:

Post a Comment