Thursday, 30 August 2012
We had a little bit of time to kill last Sunday evening, so we decided to take a stroll around Marston Marshes, a quiet patch of scrubland on the southern fringes of Norwich. We'd heard that there were owls and herons in the vicinity, and thought we might be lucky enough to catch a glimpse of them. It was a beautiful late summer evening - a blessed relief after the thunder storms the day before - and it was as if we'd stepped into an Edward Seago painting. The air seemed to have a warm amber glow, and there was very little noise, apart from the calling of wood-pigeons. Even the hum of traffic from the nearby Ipswich Road was faint and unobtrusive.
A pigeon flapped across the sky, caught in the rays of the sun, wheezing his ahsmatic bleat.
Then a shot rang out, and he fell, tumbling downwards. We couldn't see where he landed, but guessed it must have been in the river, or near the railway line.
Then another shot, and another, and another.
There was silence, then the pellets fell out of the sky, and landed on our heads.