Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Noooooo!



Went to look at a house today. Frankly, the most beautiful house I have ever seen. A converted section of a thirteenth century hall. Older than anything else in the town, except the Cathedral. Ancient stone floor downstairs. Four hundred year old oak floorboards upstairs. A marble-tiled showerroom. An exquisite galley kitchen the other side of the elephantine chimneybreast. And the roof! The roof! The whole place has been bevelled and fitted and kitted out with incredible care, massive expense, and oh dear, it is absolutely the most heartbreakingly lovely space I have ever walked about in.




Heartbreaking because: it has no garden. Bar a five and a half-foot wide stretch along a wall out of the doorway. Which is used for access to all the other apartments in this building. And that's just not safe enough, or large enough, for a hawk.

Heartbreaking! I guess I could keep a hawk indoors....

no, I really need a garden.

Gah!

9 comments:

Steve Bodio said...

I will send you a photo...

Also, remember the Chinese city houses in Nick Fox's gos film.

I LOVE (& would envy you) that house!

pluvialis said...

That's true; and people used to keep goshawks in kitchens, right? Would it work? Would it work? Would it be fair on the gos? What about moulting her out? Oh, no, I can't bear it!

Heidi the Hick said...

ooooh no! I couldn't figure it out- it's so perfect for you! It's unbleievable! I was thinking how incredibly happy I could be in that house too! I dream about houses like that (although in this country much much newer...) So what's the problem...

Damn. I couldn't live without some green space. You really have to promise yourself that you will not look at any houses that don't have a garden!!!! We can't take this kind of hearbreak!!!

Matt Mullenix said...

Yours would probably NOT be the first gos who lived in that house!Think of it!

Would hate not to have at least a small walled courtyard, though. That would make it complete.

Can you knock down an outbuilding or something?

pluvialis said...

There is a parking area shared between all four apartments: sits at the far end of the house (the right-hand end, just off the edge of the photograph). It's laid with gravel, quite large, and is behind a high, though see-through, fence. I guess there's at least a chance that one could put a little mews up there -- but it's not secure, being open to the street, and I suspect it might be difficult to get permission. Not simply because it might not be my land/would annoy the neighbours, but also because the house is listed as a historic building, and it may be impossible to erect even temporary buildings next to it. Hmm.

It is good to think that there would have been many goshawks in this building before now. It was built in the 1300s. So...I wonder how many goshawks...

pluvialis said...

Which makes it a 14th century hall. Bloody hell, I'm a historian. How embarrassing.

Steve Bodio said...

I think it could work. I would do it!

So does Libby if you think this is just mad falconer talk,and she has been living with birds inside for years (Pluvi, you may post either pic I sent if you wish).

Just man her to occasional vacuum cleaners! The Chinese would.

Matt Mullenix said...

Let me second Steve's note about hawks in the house. I kept mine indoors (15 years of apartment living during and after college) and had no major problems.

These were small hawks, the largest being a male Harris. I kept them on bowperches or screen perches, and with daily changing of the newspapers managed to keep them fairly tidy.

Note also I was married and managed to stay married through much of this period (knock on wood). Shelly ousted the birds when our kids were born, but had we no children, there would be hawks in the house today.

Let me point you to my friend Eric Edwards' website where he has some indoor housing pics. Eric has always kept his birds indoors, and, having an agreeable wife and no babies, does so still today.

http://www.merlinfalconry.com/ericedwequip.htm

Matt Mullenix said...

Also, for weathering: If you're willing to spend a few minutes sitting with the bird for her protection, all that's needed is a bathpan, a lawn chair and a portable bowperch. You can keep these beside the back door as I did in my various aparetments.

3-4 chances a week to bathe and take twenthy minutes of sun would be plenty to keep a hawk happy.

As for molting, I molted mine indoors and usually flew them through the molt anyway. But you could probbaly work something out with your gos mentor or another falconer to get her a chamber for the summer if you provide for her food, no?