“What the Peacock was that” ?

It was a great camp site, off the beaten track, hidden in amongst the thorn trees, providing us with much needed protection from the prying eyes of the locals. To the one side of the camp there was this massive Tamarind tree casting a nice veil of shade over us as the desert sun slowly flopped down and rested on the edge of the hills heaving its last blast of heat onto us before it quietly toppled off its perch, leaving us to recover in the cool night air. They day always seems to slow and quieten down at this time as we prepare dinner and then collapse into out tents.

Suddenly there was one hell of a commotion. Out of the dusk came these massive low flying objects appearing from nowhere and headed straight for us, at the last moment they seemed to take a sharp turn left as they dropped their undercarriage and swooped up in a violent shuddering low speed climb and crashed straight into the top of the tamarind tree to nest. Peacocks, I actually never knew they could fly more than 2 meters. Anyway, branches falling feathers flying they finally nested for the evening perched high up in the tree. All went quit as the chilly night air forced us to retreat to our tents for warmth and rest our weary bodies.

As usual I am always up first, before sun , getting coffee on the boil and making porridge , plus all the rest I need to prepare for my long day on the road Everything was ready and quietly bubbling away. I took some water and walked away from the tents to brush my teeth in the bush. Andy and Nick had now started to emerge from their slumber and were rattling round the campsite. I don’t know what happened, but Nick fell over something and there was one huge commotion and the rest that goes with this.

I looked around as the noise escalated, but ignored it and carried on brushing my teeth. The next thing I knew I was under attack. Something hit me in the nape of my back; the next thing smacked me on the back of my neck as I staggered forward and plunged face first into the sand, nearly swallowing my toothbrush in the process. I rolled over to see who my assailant was as just as the next blow hit me in the ribs. There was now a spine chilling scream going on all around me, it sounded if someone was being strangled as I lay half winded and bewildered.

Through this onslaught and bewilderment, all I could now hear was laughter as I lay on the desert floor – Andy and Nick.

Through the commotion that they had caused, they had spooked the peacocks in the tree above me. The great flyers that they are, they don’t fly out of the tree, they just drop and try and glide at the last moment before they land, unfortunately, I was right in that trajectory.

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