While I have escaped autumn leaves and winter snow living in Florence, living here does have its challenges.....the pigeons. I am fortunate as they seem to for the most part avoid my terrace. Perhaps the ferociousness of Libby keeps them away. But as I have laid in bed the past several weeks I have been awakened by a pigeon who clearly has the desire to nest on the shutter outside my bedroom window. With this comes the noise - What does a pigeon do "coo"? While some may celebrate the noises of nature, at 5 am I have no desire to get in touch with nature. My OCD brain also fixates on the feathers that come through my window. As I vacuum them up off the floor all I can think about is how pigeons are the rats of the sky carry disease and microscopic bugs and bacteria. I cannot even bring myself to pick the feathers up with my bare hand. I know, I know crazy, but that is my brain. My thoughts are not without merit as I know of a woman who had to pay an exterminator to get rid of some sort of mites from her apartment that she feels were brought in from the pigeons that live in her courtyard. Looking at the bug bites that covered a friend's body that was in her apartment for only two hours cemented my decision to do whatever it took to get rid of the pigeon that was trying to set up house on my bedroom shutter.
I tried to scare of the pigeon by making noise whenever it was around. That was a very short lived solution. Pigeons are just so use to sharing the world with us humans that they aren't really that afraid of us. Thinking about the diseases that come with this feathered foe, and envisioning Penelope (Emily's dog) leaping from the bed in an attempt to catch the pigeon and falling several floors to the ground, I decided that it was time to declare war and once and for all show this pigeon that my bedroom shutter was not going to be its new home. The question was how. Squirting water at it would not work as it has been raining for weeks. This pigeon is already soaked with water. Then it came to me; bathroom cleaner. So armed with a bottle of bathroom cleaner I quietly skulked to my window being very careful not to be heard until the last minute when I pulled the trigger. The shocked pigeon quickly flew away. When it returned I was ready for action, with the bathroom cleaner on the bedside table. This battle took days of me stalking the window at every free moment ready to quickly fire the bathroom cleaner before the pigeon had time to fly away. At last it seems I have won the battle. It has now been over a week and there has been no sign of the pigeon. I feel so confident that I have won the battle with this pigeon that I have put the bathroom cleaner back in the cupboard. The rain has stopped, the sun is shining, I am not being woken up by a pigeon at 5 am, I am no longer dealing with diseased plagued pigeon feathers, and I am not going to have to worry about Penelope leaping out my bedroom window. Once again, all is well in my city.