The Wing-Friends and Other Books

In Blogger's slideshows images are greatly reduced, so lose much of their impact. And captions added to them in Picasa Albums vanish, so the images shown above are: the Milky Way, the Orion Nebula, Earth, Earth with New Zealand circled, New Zealand, Auckland & the Hauraki Gulf, Waiheke Island, some native NZ forest, a Fantail and chicks, various doves, etc.

(If you want to see the first ten images in their original size, they are in a posting made on the 24th of November 2011.)

My book The Wing-Friends is an imaginative tale of a small brave boy, a magical adventure, a magnificent Pegasus and the wonderful Kingdom of the Pegasi. It has been given very good reviews, and virtually every reader on Goodreads has so far awarded it five stars. It is available here. Some of my other writings are available as e-books, such as The Lower Deck, which is an over-the-top take on Waiheke happenings--sort of.

Wednesday, 21 August 2013


Although in New Zealand we are still in the last weeks of winter two dove chicks have already appeared. One came down to the ground two days ago, the second today, so they must have emerged from the egg round about the turn of the month. The parents must have had their work cut out to keep them warm this weather.

They are pretty well fledged, so can keep themselves warm now, but cannot fly up into the trees to roost at night so are staying on the ground nestled together in forest leaves under the building. As you can see they like being close together, so they may well be siblings. I have yet to see who their parents are

As dusk fell on the 17th of June I saw a dove huddled on the ground by the little water-jars looking very unhappy. I picked her up and brought her inside because she obviously could not fly up into the trees. She was not eating, but did take water. She was still alive the next morning, but still not well. Late in the afternoon I picked her up and prayed over her and by the grace of God when I put her down she brought up three lumps of food that had stuck somewhere. After that she looked a lot happier, but she made no move to go outside so I kept her inside a second night. She went outside in the early afternoon, so she was obviously feeling much better then, although still not one hundred percent.

But she obviously liked the experience, because she came back in later, and has been coming in every day since, usually about mid afternoon, and goes out at about nine in the mornings. She knows the best place to be. There is always food and water, it never rains, and the temperature is always a comfortable 20 to 24 degrees Celsius. What more could a dove want?

Because she is one of the doves with wide circlets she always looks wide-eyed, so I call her WidestEyes1, following my usual habit of giving names based on easily identifiable physical atributes.

She is a very well-behaved lodger. She does not say much and stays in one place in my office most of the time. She has become very used to my movements. Most of the time she sits, or stands on one leg, watching me at work (from well-placed paper towels to keep things clean).

She seems to have lost full confidence in her wings. I have seen her come down from the roof a couple of times so she must be able to get up there. But when she was ill she could not get more than a few centimetres off the floor, and she still does not fly from there to her favourite place, which is only waist-high. I am sure she can physically, because she has flown greater horizontal and vertical distances inside, but she seems stuck mentally. She could not fly to that place when she was ill, and still thinks she cannot. So she takes it in three or four steps, scrambling from one foothold to another till she can flit across the final bit. Sometimes it takes her several attempts. Occasionally I take pity on her and lift her up, but she likes to do it herself.