40° today. I’ve mentioned this before, sorry to repeat. 42° tomorrow. Yesterday I left the apartment, which presently looks like a segment from a police crime scene documentary – all the windows open, all curtains closed, at least one fan running in each room, people walking around in their underpants in a daze. It feels like a ‘meths’ lab for teetotallers. I was heading to the supermarket to buy my dinner. And I saw something I have never seen before in my life – it reminded me of the end of time.
Pigeons are to Paris what dog shit is to its pavements. If you were to head out for a pleasant amble and didn’t see dog shit everywhere, you would think you’d been rendered in some C.I.A. blacks ops scandal, and woken up in Singapore. There could be no other explanation. If you don’t see a thousand filthy legless limping pigeons stumbling around looking for anything to eat, then something is seriously amiss. On my dinner amble, I passed a half eaten baguette, resting in what I can only imagine in pigeon parlance, as a prime location. Not a crumb or two, but half a baguette stuffed with all things good and healthy. And there was not a pigeon to be seen. Anywhere. It looked as though it had lain there for hours. Please trawl through the recesses of your brain and try and recall a time when a soiled sandwich on a city street wasn’t immediately hoovered up.
Now, I’ve seen pigeons throw themselves under buses for a Dorito. I once watched two, in London, die quick, but squishy deaths chasing a peanut. I observed the confused look of their mother as she tried to make sense of her misshapen progeny. Before, seconds later, dying herself chasing the same nut.
It’s got to be some ‘hot’ for a pigeon to regard the meal of a lifetime, and go, ‘nah, I’m staying right here next to the a/c.’
© Dominic Penhale | All Rights Reserved