Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree
Merry, merry king of the bush is he
Laugh, Kookaburra! Laugh, Kookaburra!
Gay your life must be
Last summer I was able to visit a friend in Sydney, Australia. Though the trip didn’t begin very well. I had some sort of bug and my mom literally had to pull the car over on the way to the airport so I could vomit some more. I had a tight connection in San Francisco and had to speed walk to my gate, just making it as the final boarding call began. As soon as dinner was served, I had to rush to the bathroom to vomit again. There was a medical emergency on the plane (when we were in the middle of the Pacific Ocean) and our plane got diverted to Melbourne to let the passenger off to get medical help. So what should have been a 15 hour plane ride turned into almost 18, all while feeling like death. Finally getting off the plane I realized that my checked bag wasn’t anywhere to be found—it was still in San Francisco. Feeling slightly dejected I made my way through security and a guard asked, “Is this all you brought?” “Oh, well, my bag got left in America.” “Sorry, mate!” It made me smile. And as soon as I saw my friend, Gaye, I knew that everything would be okay.
We took it easy the first day and I slept soundly that night. The next morning I woke up and was drinking tea (still not feeling well, still no bag), when suddenly I heard a noise I had never heard before. I looked at Gaye and asked, “What IS that?” Laughing, she said that it was a kookaburra. “Are you serious?” I made my way to the balcony of her apartment, felt the cool morning breeze, and just listened to the laughter of the kookaburra (it could have been the one pictured above as we saw this bird later that day.) (Also, if you’ve never heard a kookaburra laugh, please enjoy this YouTube video. Though don’t play it in a public place because they are loud!) With the laughter of the kookaburra, I once again knew that everything would be okay.
Some days, when I have the windows open, I wake up to the sound of birds singing in the morning. Maybe you do too. We know from a scientific standpoint that it’s usually male birds who sing the dawn chorus. Males who are attempting to attract a mate or warn off other males from their territory. Though I’d like to think that those birds singing here in our own backyard can be a reminder that “morning has broken, like the first morning, blackbird has spoken like the first bird.” A reminder that another day has begun. Life is a gift. We are alive and hearing the dawn chorus. How blessed we truly are. “Praise for the singing! Praise for the morning!”
(This Week’s Thoughts 5.23.19)