There was a man in Brighton sitting outside a department store beside a folding table. On it were some toys and some leaflets; on the other side of the table, a telescope. The man, an outdoor kind of man, said something as we walked past and we stopped, and wandered back. He smiled at us without anything odd at all and suggested we look through his telescope. There was a black-looking bird hunched up on a railing. It took me a few seconds to work out that the railing was at the top of a tower block, hundreds of feet up, towards the sea front. I realised it was the block that towered over our hotel.
The man told us his name was Barnaby and that I was looking at a peregrine falcon. He showed Sarah and me a web page where we could look inside a nesting box at the top of the tower, beneath the railing I’d just seen. There was a bird inside, slightly ruffling her fathers, shifting, sitting tight on some eggs.
So I joined the RSPB and bought myself some new sunglasses. The evening before there’d been a sunset like fire in the sky. It was an odd kind of a sight-seeing trip.