The days have been bright and stunning; birds are chirping, and nesting in the trees with their new shoots. The pool is adjusting to its chemical editing. Honey, our fugitive guinea pig runs free in the garden, hiding beneath the foliage of agapanthus when I try to catch her. She’s not a real pet, Tegan complains, disconsolately, over breakfast and I sympathise. But soon there is a new distraction in the garden. A crested pigeon enters the empty hutch to feed on the lettuce and scattered seed. A breeze shuts the timber door and the pigeon starts to panic, swinging her tail high. I can hear the whistle of her wings. The bronzed neck feathers ruffle, the thinly-crested head darts about nervously.

I feel headless lately; being swamped in admin is a bore. I could use a little mindfulness. The photograph reminds me of the serenity of one of the world’s most ancient Buddhist temples, which, like many, was looted and vandalised by excavators, museums and private “collectors” in the name of art. Why are such pieces not repatriated?

Decapitated Buddha: Borobudur
Decapitated Buddha, Borobudur

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