In the mornings our windows are clouded with condensation, a filigree of droplets, spectral as frost. They are a sign that people are living here – that here, within, humans are breathing. If you were a scientist from Mars, a cosmic hunter, perhaps, of the human animal, you would pause outside the opaque windows, stained with moist breath, warmed by the life cosseted inside, and you would recognise the signs.

Outside, in the cold morning light, a female weaver has found the new bird feeder, hanging on the garden wall. She pecks, looks, hops around to face the other way, looks up, down, pecks again. The price of freedom – or, in her case, the price of survival – is eternal vigilance.

She has found her favourite breakfast cafe, I tell Rob.

Yes, Rob says. Next thing, she’ll be ordering a cappuccino.

Advertisements