After pushing the black button the following occurs: the bird on the right lifts - a little askew - his head until he looks at the other bird. Then he slowly pushes the parcel to the bird opposite him. The latter refuses; sluggishly shakes his head. Rightaway the bird with the parcel lowers his head again and takes the "present" back.Courtesy of Michel Huisman, from a book of photographs of his automata. We went down the pub after, for a well-earned beer. The pubs all smell sickly this winter, though from the new mulled wine they have on tap.
Christmas Eve suffered almost every hitch imaginable, from power cuts to overcooked pigeon to the failure of wet branches to burn in wet air, but at least I got to play the (fairly) gracious hostess. I should do more of that next year, I think. Christmas (at tinyjo and oxfordhacker's) involved so much relaxation that by the end I was starting to develop bedsores. And probably gout, from playing the "drink when you want to slap Micky game"* with port in a new and very scientific-looking vodka glass that tinyjo must have bought in Ikea while I was briefly glancing in the other direction. She has the skills, specifically mad roast skills.
Today I spent entirely watching nonsensical frilly manga romance Fruits Basket gifted me by mr_snips, who is wise in he ways of obtaining dodgy anime. I also ate some chocolates and cheese. I still haven't phoned any of my family or done the washing up from Christmas Eve.
But there's always tomorrow.
*Obligatory Dr Who reference.