Banana management

Banana management

One of the things that I love about going anywhere on Tenerife is that invariably we’ll see something slightly unusual. With the weather not playing ball, we decided on the last day of my mum’s visit to take her on one of our favourite short walks – along the Rambla del Castro on Los Realejos’ coastline.

We parked at the San Pedro Mirador and wondered along the old cobbled path and through banana plantations, skirting wonderful rundown colonial haciendas which we wished we had enough money to buy and renovate, stopping every so often to smell country orange blossom.

As we neared the coast, we saw that there was a man standing beside a pile of boxes at the top of the cliffs.
“Is that some sort of a bird in his hands?” Andy asked.
We were still some distance from him when she said this, so I couldn’t see too clearly. As I struggled to make out what it was, he seemed to roll it into a ball.
“No, it’s a black plastic bag,” I laughed.
The man threw his hands into the air.
“Well, if that’s a plastic bag, it’s just sprouted wings and flown off,” Andy replied, somewhat smarmily I felt.

Up, up and away

Up, up and away

It turned out that he worked for the Canarian Government and was returning rescued seabirds to the wild. Inside each box was a shearwater, or a petrel (my twitching skills aren’t good enough to say for sure what they were).
He took each one out of its box, folded its wings carefully and launched it into the air and to freedom.

All very nice and heart warming; we watched until he threw one of the birds into the air where it hung suspended for a moment like Wile E. Coyote before plunging earthwards, apparently having forgotten what the two feathered things on the side of its body were for.

At that point we decided to continue on our way, leaving the bird man of Los Realejos to scramble down the cliff path, rescue the battered and bruised bird and take it back to the sanctuary for some more flight lessons.


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