Algy had forgotten quite how windy it was in his own wee corner of the West Highlands, but at least it saved the expense of going to a fun fair… He enjoyed riding among the dangling catkins on such a sunny afternoon, but he found that he got sprayed with pollen as the branches shook, which made him sneeze.

When Algy woke up from his long sleep, he went immediately to inspect his own special patch of bluebells. Although he had seen many beautiful expanses of bluebells recently, he felt that his own were the loveliest of all.

Algy would like to dedicate his bluebells to all those kind friends and followers who have been watching his Adventures “out and about” over the past week, and leaving notes in his absence. He thanks you all very much, and alos sends a special fluffy wave to his new followers 🙂

Algy was so exhausted by the time he reached home that he couldn’t even find the energy to fly up into his tree. So he just curled up on the lush grass among the cuckoo flowers, tucked his head under his wing, and went straight to sleep.

The next morning the sun climbed steadily higher in the sky, and butterflies flitted busily to and fro around him, but Algy still slept on, dreaming happily of his adventures near and far.

And so, as evening fell, Algy found himself back again at his favourite way station by the quiet loch. It was not easy to see in the gloaming, but he thought that the grass had grown a wee bit longer, and more of the bluebells were flowering now. In the distance he could hear the cuckoo calling, and he knew that he would very soon be home again. It seemed almost as though he had never been away …

When the sun sank lower in the sky Algy woke up, refreshed by his afternoon nap by the burn. It was time to set off on the last stage of his journey home. He emerged from the glen and crossed the great sea loch via the seals’ islands, where he paused to bathe his feet in the water. The tide was high, so the seals were away out to sea, looking for their supper. Behind him, the evening sun caught the last remnants of snow on the mountains. It was a fine evening to be out and about.

https://www.tumblr.com/audio_file/adventuresofalgy/51466338778/tumblr_mngewxP3uA1rruorh?plead=please-dont-download-this-or-our-lawyers-wont-let-us-host-audio

The constant, soothing sound of the wee waterfall tumbling over the rocks just above him lulled Algy to sleep as he sat by the burn in the afternoon sun.

{The sound will be clearest through headphones or external speakers.}

It was a wee bit windy, of course, but the sun was shining brightly for once. Algy found himself a sheltered perch on a warm rock low down by the side of the burn, at a point where it tumbled over some rocks before descending through the woodland towards the sea. He could happily watch the play of shadows on the sparkling water for hours, soothed by the constant sound of the waterfall above.

Listen to the soporific sound of the waterfall which lulled Algy to sleep in the afternoon sun.

Algy flew along the shores of the loch all morning, until he reached the mouth of a glen which was overshadowed by mountains rising up steeply on either side. The afternoon sun was pleasantly warm, so he paused for a rest on the banks of the pretty river which flowed down the glen towards the sea. Most of the trees were covered in spring green now, and Algy thought of a poem written by the famous Chinese poet Li Bai many centuries ago:

          You ask why I make my home in the mountain forest,
          and I smile, and am silent,
          and even my soul remains quiet:
          it lives in the other world
          which no one owns.
          The peach trees blossom,
          The water flows.

{The poem Green Mountain, by the 8th Century poet Li Bai (also known as Li Po), has been translated many times, and the various translations are quite different from one another. Algy is quoting the translation by the contemporary American poet Sam Hamill.}

Although the garden was beautiful, Algy knew that he didn’t really belong there. The time had come to find his way back home, but as he didn’t know how he had got there, he wasn’t sure which way to set off. He looked around for the tallest tree in the garden and flew up into its highest branches. From there he could see for miles, and in the distance he spotted the gleam of a very long stretch of water which he felt sure was the great sea loch.

So Algy took a deep breath, said farewell to the lovely garden, and launched himself towards the loch so that he could follow its shores for a while. He took comfort from the thought that as he now knew where the garden was hidden, he could return again next spring, as the other birds do.

Algy spent a wonderful day in the garden. He knew that he could not stay long in such a Paradise, and would soon have to start the arduous journey home. The sun was sinking down low in the sky, so Algy found himself a beautiful bed for the night, with a counterpane of soft pink petals which had fallen to the ground. He wondered if he would ever have such a bed again …