Bird rescue

6th November, 2019

On a particularly bad day, when I’d gone into the maths department on a public holiday by accident1, I saw nobody around. Coming down the staircase to leave, however, I saw a blue tit trapped inside, loitering by the photo of Grothendieck.

It was flying against the (closed) window, trying to get out, and making quite a noise about it. When I went to corner it to try to catch it, however, after a short kerfuffle it simply landed on my hand. I know it might be silly to ascribe meaning to such things, but it very much seemed to me as if it were tired of flying into the window over and over, and was willing to accept any form of help. I cradled it in my hands, up a flight of stairs, along the corridor, and then down two more flights of stairs. Coming outside, I loosened my grip, and it flew off, making a bunch of very loud bird noises.

It seemed entirely uninjured, and, more than traumatised, it just seemed a bit pissed off about the whole event.2 The whole thing was pretty magical to me, given how much I love birds, and especially given what an awful day I’d been having. Here’s some video evidence that I made to reassure myself that I wasn’t just having a particularly vivid dream.


  1. Having been in France for over three years now, I’ve still failed to grasp the number of seemingly random holidays that they have throughout the year.↩︎

  2. Which is probably the most bird-like attitude I can imagine.↩︎