This guy greeted me this morning halfway up the block from our house. We’ve heard him calling every morning, all spring and into the summer. Fifteen years ago, when we first moved to here, a party of four peafowl roamed the neigh-borhood (I say “party” because that’s what a group of male and female “peafowl” are. I say “peafowl, ’cause that includes the “hens” and “cocks,” I say “c…” oh nevermind).
Over the years cars and coyotes and time have dwindled the party to this one lonely fellow (I wonder if he feels how I feel at the end of a party, I’m not an early departer, I always hating to leave early — I hate to miss something).
We hear him often, we see him occasionally. This summer, we’ve seen him most days, hanging out on one or another driveway. This morning, right when I came along, he opened his feathers. I had my camera, just hoping I’d run into him. It was like he knew. He did a few slow turns: front, side, back. This is the back view.
When I squatted down he came toward me, sideways in these tiny little steps. I don’t know if he was falling for the tinkly sounds my camera makes or if he was trying to scare me. If he was trying to scare me, well I’ve gotta say, “Mr. Peacock, my fine feathered friend (it is the perfect moment to use that phrase, isn’t it?), I’m not scared but I might be in love.”
As I walked on up the big hill, I could hear his strange call, something between a cat and a baby and an elephant.
He’s lonely. Do you have a friend for him?