Funday Times

A Family of Crows
By Tahnee Hopman, Pic by Sanka Vidanagama

Everyday, the sight of me and my little family setting up house, sparks off a lot of interest among the humans looking at us through the window of their busy newspaper office. What, you may ask, is a family doing, starting a new life outside the window of a newspaper office?

Well, we are no ordinary family. Or rather, in our point of view we are; but to humans, a crow's nest (and a wild one at that) with babies about to hatch out of their eggs, is not usually looked upon as a 'normal family.' You see, in case you have not noticed, crows are definitely not very popular as birds go.
This is no fairy tale; nor is it an epic tale of hero against villain.

The story of my family is like the story of many other crow families you would see hidden on the branches of trees or nestled in the nooks and crannies of buildings. It is a story of survival, as we live alongside humans in a world that is rarely kind to birds like us who feed on leftovers and garbage of humans.

This may seem like a sad story, but it is not. The life we lead is tough, but we are not sad birds. Crows are friendly– we like the company of our fellow species and are always there for each other. As a result, it would be very rare to see a sad crow.

To begin my story, my name is Cynthia and my husband is Cornelius – admittedly two unusual names for crows, but what can I say? We both had strange parents. How did we come to live in a nest made of twigs, waste paper and plastic tape used to tie bundles of newspaper, on an arch outside the window of this big office?

It all started with Cornelius' crazy dream of living on top of the highest sky scraper in the city… Cornelius is – for want of a better expression – not the most down to earth of birds. Unlike the rest of most of our kind, Cornelius likes to dream big.

So to follow his dream, we left our cosy little nest which was hidden in a large tree on the outskirts of the city. After a little flying around, we came to the tallest building in the city which stands majestically over its neighbours and has a wonderful view of the sea. Cornelius loved it on sight, but I was nervous – it was just too high for me, and what if the babies fell out before learning to fly?

I need not have worried though. Cornelius had not accounted for the strong wind that blew around the tall building. In the time it took to find more twigs for the growing pile which was to make the nest, the twigs that he collected had already blown away.

The time had come for us to find a new place to nest – this time on a building a little closer to the ground. Luckily, there were plenty to choose from, and this is how we came to live by the window of a bustling
newspaper office.

Twigs found from a nearby park were in plentiful supply and we had an added luxury – a lot of
wastepaper which would keep us warm. Cornelius also added a few homey touches like some long plastic tape the humans used to tie up their paper.

And this brings me back to the present. The eggs have been laid and will hatch soon. I sit and watch over them day by day and wait for my babies to come out. Cornelius flies around the city throughout the day searching for tasty morsels for me to eat, while I look down at the activity below me.

Our nest is not the prettiest nest, nor is it surrounded by trees like the nest I was used to, but it is our home. Our shelter from the wind and rain, and a better shelter than a tree could give us. Most importantly though, we are happy.

We will soon be a large, happy family, but that readers, is another story.

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