Powerless – The Year the Lights Went Out

Sunday, April 13 – Devotion and ducklings

I went to church today with Gail and Linda and we enjoyed singing All Glory Laud and Honour loudly at the top of our voices, as it is Palm Sunday. It helped me to forget about Martin and what he might be doing, as we walked in procession around the church. There were no palm crosses distributed this year, but some people had come with ones they’d kept from previous years and fronds of bamboo.
As we walked home, I felt reassured by the good people around me. If Martin doesn’t return soon I still have the support of friends and family and will feel able to put my energy into helping the younger ones learn how to manage the house and garden.
This afternoon I worked in the garden, pulling weeds in the courtyard for the hens and was feeling quite cheerful until I noticed crows hovering around the duck pond. I’d counted twelve ducklings there yesterday afternoon, but when I went across to check there were only seven. Every year the delight of seeing ducklings is tainted by the knowledge that their numbers will decrease hour by hour as these predatory crows and magpies pick off the fluffy babies. Jane says she doesn’t even want to know there are ducklings as she finds the slaughter so upsetting. And I get annoyed with the mother ducks who are so careless after all their laying and nesting, leading their young directly across the lawns in full view of the marauding birds.
I checked on the ducklings again when I went to feed the hens at five. The mother was sitting on the bank with some of her brood tucked under her wings, but one solitary duckling was swimming frantically round and round in the pond, unable to climb the bank to safety and warmth.

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