Friday, June 29, 2007


It has been hard to write anything in the last few days. I've been very tired, work is ridiculously busy, and the weather has become horribly muggy. Besides all that, the America's Cup is on and is being uncharacteristically interesting, keeping me up far too late.

Last night was a day off for the sailors, which was just as well because I didn't get home until nine and had to be up again at five. But I had some preparation to do that I had forgotten over the weekend, and so had a cup of tea to keep myself awake for that. That turned out to be a mistake, because it also kept me awake for half of what was left of my night, and meant that today I was not feeling very on top of things.

And that is why I think I must have been hallucinating today when I was up on the eleventh floor with my class of third year students. They were taking a test, and I was wandering around the room keeping an eye on them. Nobody was cheating dramatically, which made things rather boring for me, and I went to the back of the room so nobody could see I was having trouble paying attention. I allowed my gaze to drift out the window at the hazy, polluted view.

And as I was staring out the window, a crow flew by, rather ponderously, with a bright yellow tennis ball in its beak. Then it disappeared around the side of the building.

I stood there like a dummy, rooted to the spot and staring after the crow. Then I looked wildly around the classroom, hoping someone else had seen it, but all heads were down. Superman could have flown past thumbing his nose and my students wouldn't have noticed. I stared out the window again, but the crow did not come back.

Then I started to doubt what I'd just seen. It was just TOO RIDICULOUS. Was that like one of those visions of the Virgin Mary that happen to people occasionally, probably when they're overtired? If I meditated more upon spiritual matters and less on the weird habits of crows would I have less ludicrous visions?

Of course it could be that the crows are collaborating with my students, because the entire class could have pulled out cheat sheets at that moment and I wouldn't have noticed a thing.


Anonymous said...

The third day up, walking in a Kobe street with workmates, I didn't see the VM, but I was seeing shadowy forms of people, shadowy transparent, which worried me a bit at first. Until I realized they were dream figures, that I was dreaming awake. Some mystical writer, maybe Jacob Boehme, wrote: "the gates of Pluto should not be opened, within is a people of dreams" - he must have been up too late too. Think I'd prefer dream people though to a raven with a tennis ball...

Radioactive Jam said...

Somewhere an umpire is still paused in mid-"Out!" while two (or even four) players stare at the now empty sky.

Much like you did, I think.

Crows. Who'd a thunk it?