RTD?? ...That's the 'Far Eastern, slanty eyed, chicken chow mein, super noodle Dove' - not a 'Rouge Necked Diver'!
Yep, on Saturday 19th Feb, I headed down to Chipping Norton in Oxfordshire, accompanied by Mikipedia & Matt Scott, to get involved in some serious scrummage on a quiet suburban street with around 2 billion(?) other fools. Another reason for descending onto this usually peaceful area was to bag ourselves the Rufous (Oriental) Turtle Dove that had been knocking around for a while.
Arriving at 6am, we initially had to endure a c3hr wait, stood queuing along the pavement with loads of that wet stuff falling on our heads and generally looking like a long line of sad depressed c*nts awaiting our turn to enter Auschwitz (whilst the inhabitants of the street looked on out of their cosy living rooms, no doubt slurping gallons of hot tea and sinking shit loads of bacon cobs).
For those of you who arn't aware, and there cant really be many, we were queuing in order to be mugged of a fiver so that we could enter this kind hearted blokes house in order to view his back garden, where for a maximum of 5 minutes we would be treated to crippling views of our target wolfing down seed that had been scattered on the lawn.
Anyhow, at around 8.45am, I along with a bloke behind me, noticed a suspect dove head over the street and behind the house that we were soon to be entering. Within 10 seconds the shout went up that the bird was on view, perched atop a tree behind number 41. This is where it went a bit silly as the whole queue suddenly surged down the street in a somewhat vain hope of cramming into a Volvo estate sized gap in order to snatch a glimpse of the bird. Being somewhat vertically challenged I attempted to get to the front of the sardines but a big white van (it wasn't that big) decided that it wasn't gonna let me see so I somehow made my way to the back(!) of the crowd and surprisingly managed to get a piggy back of some bloke who was stood on a chair that was precariously balanced on a the back of a small child! I also managed to get a gleg through another chaps scope at this point and soak up some nice Dovage!
The view from my elevated position!
Shortly after though, the bird decided it had had enough of being stared at and did one. Luckily for those who hadn't managed to connect, it was relocated in some tall trees SW of the street viewable from a track/gate/private field at the bottom of the street. Thankfully a 'plain clothes policeman' sporting a George Micheal style earring and dressed like Gordon Brown, was on the scene and he helped to marshall the situation, in a round about way.
Picture kindly stolen From Jason Stannage, thanks.
Having had enough of the bird, I decided to just enjoy the moment and took immense pleasure in watching the various characters scrapping, jostling and kicking the shit out of each other in order to bag the bird. One guy I witnessed was so overcome with panic to see the bird that has he was barging through he whacked a small 'Private Drive' sign and promptly turned and apologised to it!!
We eventually slithered away from the melee and made our way back up the hill towards my motor for sanctuary, food and warmth but we stalled for a while half way and once again soaked up the moment, observing various goings on and for a little bit more of the Dove that was now showing to just a few of us (the rest of the world still at the bottom of the hill in that field recreating The Battle of Stirling Bridge, albeit in Oxfordshire).
Slowly though word got around and we began to get inundated with red faced sweaty blokes who'd had enough of being squashed and were now opting to get some more relaxed views. This is where I called the troops up, the two of them, and decided to do one back home. The pic below is the last of the day as we attempted to leave - look how Mikipedia's gentle face is about to be squashed between that Sco-Pac and that van. Everyone - ''Awwwwww''.