My already meagre ornithological skills have clearly atrophied to almost nothing. Two days ago, shortly after I'd topped up the bird-feeder with high-energy seed'n'peanut goodness, Natalie spotted a robin bipping about in the holly tree. The low morning sun was hitting square on, lighting it up like a little avian beacon, so bright was it.
We saw our glowing little friend again the next morning. With her mate. Things begin to grind. That's wrong - robins are wildly territorial and absolutely don't get chummy in the winter. Then to clinch the deal, glow-bird's pal flits onto the feeder, showing off his splendid white backside.
I scraped, head hung in shame, around for my tiny binoculars and field guide for confirmation. How could a new bird visit the garden and it take me two days for me to spot it? Especially when it's as distinctive as a bullfinch? Even at twenty metres and not really paying attention, I should be able to tell one of these from one of those.
Didn't see them this morning, so perhaps they've moved on. Keep an eye out ...