The Nice Thing About Strangers

Creative Non-Fiction Short Stories. :) Travel, Oldsters, Love, and Compassion.


“Tavuskuşu var, tavuskuşu var!” The little girl is squealing over the presence of peacocks in a small aviary near the restaurant. Her calling spooks four white doves, who flap into a far corner and hide. Chickens make a wide circle away. The girl’s hair shoots out in all directions, like birds fleeing from her high-pitched glee. Her father, a giant with a unibrow, urges her to take a few steps back. He asks her to observe from a distance. Her older sister is scared of the birds and stands behind their father, as the smaller, wild-haired little one asks why anyone should be afraid. These birds are so beautiful, she remarks, pushing her fingers through the chicken wire and pressing her face peck-ably-close. Her father comes to her side, reaching back for the older daughter, then he frees his chirping daughter’s grip on the wire and puts her hand in his enormous palm. He leads the girls off down the stairs, back toward the restaurant. He holds up his smaller daughter as she trips forward over the steps, still craning her neck toward the birds as they sigh (if chickens can sigh) and settle in.

–Çiçekli Köy, Turkey.

2 comments on “Birdwatching

  1. Maureen Sudlow
    May 23, 2016

    love your observations

  2. sedge808
    May 23, 2016

    yes. wonderfully observed.

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This entry was posted on May 23, 2016 by in Travel, Turkey, Writing and tagged , .

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