We had barely settled in our cottage that I was already planning an early adventure for the morning to come. No one in the house dared follow me, so I left alone, before sunrise. In a tree, a Common blackbird (Turdus merula) sung.
I aimed for the sea, but first I had to cross the forest. Birds were singing, though they mostly stayed hidden. It’s when I left the woods to wander in the dunes that the show started. On the path, rabbits ran away. In the bushes, warblers and wrens defended their territories by whistling loud and clear, only diving into the vegetation when I approached a bit too close. The weather was changing, almost Finnish: my skin could be warmed by the sun a moment, then rinsed by rain minutes later. This shows beautifully in some pictures, where the birds catch a ray of sun while the background is dark grey. Luckily the showers were not too bad, and they never lasted long.
Even in the rain, this Common whitethroat (Sylvia communis) stayed atop its briar. Note the drops scattered on the plumage.
After a while, the sky cleared and the atmosphere warmed up significantly. I found shelter in the forest I had first traversed, got almost trampled by horses, and finally walked back to the holiday village where Herring gulls (Larus argentatus) noisily occupied the rooftops.
At home, my parents had just awakened, so I could get the second breakfast that kept me moving for the rest of the day. That’s the magic of waking up early: you see a lot of wonderful things, and then there’s still plenty of time available for more things to see!