Dad was away and Matt and I were quite bored and feeling rather sorry for ourselves, so we decided to go down to Sea Street in Negombo, which is where we live in Sri Lanka. He wanted to browse in the little corner cafe, Tecso (yes, not Tesco!), over the road from the hotel-lined ocean,... and there he found a watergun which we took with us to the beach.
While Matt was swimming, I was having a 'cuppa' tea in the covered terrace at Jetwing Beach Hotel. I had a front row seat and was enjoying the tranquility of the lazy afternoon. The ocean extending in front of me and the buzz of happy children splashing in the pool was rudely interrupted by the cawing of the pesty crows.
I was aware that I needed to guard Matthew's half-finished plate of french fries as I'd seen the birds 'squizzing' them. Fortunately I had in hand Matt's fully-loaded water gun, so decided to lure the annoying scavengers in with one of the chips as bait. I pretended to be blissfully unaware of the cacophony of excitement coming from the trees and pillars around me. When, with a flurry of flapping wings, a crow swooped down to claim his prize, I was at the ready. My weapon carefully aimed, fully loaded and pumped, I pressed the trigger. A jet of water spurted out with tremendous force, darting over the table and hitting the unsuspecting critter. Totally bewildered and thrown off course by the offending rapid fire, the looter attempted a retreat. I endeavoured to suppress my smug smirk at the sight of the creature in reverse. Quite a funny sight, really - a big black bird with a hazardous beak, a malicious glint in his eye and with menacing intention - flapping frantically in the reverse of the direction he had set his greedy eye upon. Not long after, another uninitiated brute would flap in, the prize reflecting in the glint of his ominous eye. Another 'zirt' of water and another ridiculed beast.
I confess that I was enjoying all of this a little too much - a front row seat to a new theatre production - and started to wonder what this scene must look like to the onlooking hotel guests... this crazed woman sniggering at the defenceless birds. Any spectator must have wondered at my life issues or questionable state of mind as I gleefully reloaded for the next victim. Sad to say, the thought of what this comical picture must look like to the innocuous tourists, brought a further chuckle to my already tarnished fame. I attempted to stifle my grin and was very relieved when Matt returned to eat some chips. This simple act seemed to validate my campaign of defending the neglected plate of chips and teaching the dastardly predators a good lesson: the proverbial, 'Two birds with one stone!'