Whilst winter isn’t over just yet, and it’s still dark when I leave home in the morning to travel to work, spring can’t be far away as over the past week I’ve heard birds singing the dawn chorus for the first time this year. When I say birds, I really mean one species, as it has only been song thrushes so far that I have heard in these early hours, just before 6:00am.
Over course of the spring last year, I had quite a long period of poor sleep, getting less than a handful of hours a night. Most mornings I knew it was pointless trying to get to sleep when the thrush on my roof started singing. The song of the bird, a constantly changing pattern of two or three-times repeated calls and notes, really started to annoy me. It is actually one of the nicest songs of dawn but it can be quite sharp and piercing, and not only made me even wider awake, the pattern of the call disturbed by thoughts too.
Usually, the first calls of the dawn chorus, as winter moves into spring, would be very welcome, but when I first heard that song this week, it took me right back to those sleepless nights last year. It’s strange how sounds (and other senses) can instantly transport the mind back to previous times. I’ll need to shake that association from my head as the down chorus should be something wonderful not something bad. So, I’m going to force myself to get up early one weekend morning and head out into the countryside, to sit under the canopy of a wood and listen as the dawn chorus unfolds around me – that should do the trick!