Yesterday, at least three different weather forecasters predicted rain to start last night, continue through the overnight hours and early this morning. Once again, I fell into the bad habit of believing them. I set my alarm for later, since it was a work day after all, thinking I’d catch a few extra ZZZZs this morning, then I’d get up early both weekend days. Well, that was a bad idea. But, before the alarm went off at 7:00 a.m., I awoke to the sound of chirping, tweeting and much merriment outside (as to the bird world anyway). Buddy doesn’t make a peep until I uncover him, whereupon he bursts into song, so it clearly wasn’t him as he was fast asleep in the other room. The bird noises were definitely not the tiny cheeps from sparrows seeking refuge from the rain on the back bedroom window ledges. No, it was much louder than that, and, besides, I didn’t hear the pitter patter of rain on the patio roof and it was already light down the hall. In the space of a minute, I flung off the covers, jumped out of bed and had the radio headphones on my ears to catch the weather report which stated “rain for Wayne County is headed our way later” … grumbling, I dashed to the window to open the metal blind to determine what the heck was going on with the birds. I crooked my head just enough to see a contingent of robins lined up on the cyclone fence, beaks brimming full with strands of dried grass, awaiting their turn to make a contribution to the nest building. I certainly didn’t know this was a joint effort now! But, what I did know was that this venture was close by and most certainly at MY house. There was no evidence of rain either. Silently cursing the weather people and myself alternately, I sped out to the kitchen and hastily made and finished off a bowl of oatmeal and washed it down with some scorching-hot coffee that nearly burned my throat. I could not get outside quickly enough, and by 7:30 a.m. I was dressed and headed out the door, anxious to see what mischief the birds were up to this time. I opened the screen door slowly, and what had been a crescendo of tweets and twitters immediately ceased. They saw their “bully” and soon, a bevy of birds were lifting off the fence, no doubt to alert the others of my presence. I surveyed the situation, just shaking my head. Well, this was new – in the space of a day, there was a huge pile of nest-fixings, which you and I might simply characterize as debris or yard waste, the likes of which included shredded-up Kleenex and pieces of paper towel complete with colorful motifs, string, yarn, twigs and dried grass. It was all lying in a heap underneath the security light fixture at the corner of my house. A half-completed nest was nestled in the light fixture, between the two flood lamps, and there were mud splats galore spattering the light-colored brick wall beneath the light fixture. I sighed long and hard, exasperated with them. I looked up in the tree to see several robins giving me the evil eye, and, yes, they were wearing a scowl. So, now it seems, the robin saga has now become THEM versus me. It’s as if the robin has recruited his family, friends and neighbors to help with the nest building. Is this an act of desperation and the egg laying is imminent? I shuffled dejectedly to the garage, intent to grab a broom and dustpan to drag down and dispense with their latest effort and the debris. When I arrived at the front of the house, the bag I had so carefully stuffed into the elbow of the coach lamp, was sitting on the front porch, and a new and bigger nest was in progress. A defiant robin sat close by … watching … waiting for my next move. I unlocked and flung up the garage door on its rollers, and it’s a wonder it didn’t go flying off the track, as I opened the door so hastily and angrily. I pulled my broom out and thought about taking it to him as he sat there so smugly. I whacked that nest with great gusto trying to dislodge it, and could not, so once again I hoisted the bag up and tucked it into place. The robin watched me from the split-rail fence, then, just as before, attempted to land atop the bag and realized he could not. He took a run at me next – and I ducked as he dive-bombed near me, close to my head. Loud chattering ensued and he flew off to share the tale of his latest misfortune with the others, no doubt. I returned to the backyard, pulled down the other nest-in-progress, cleaned up the mess and a good half hour later, prepared to set out my walk, hoping the respite would give me a much-needed attitude adjustment. On this most-holiest of days in the year, the morning was gray and gloomy and rain indeed threatened as was predicted. In fact, I only got to the end of the street and it started sprinkling. Undeterred, I walked on, ignoring the light rain, and feeling just as defiant as that pesky robin and his compadres. Soon, more raindrops forced me to head home, and as I neared my driveway, I saw a trio of robins glaring down at me from Marge’s plum tree. My steely glance toward them truly belied the fact that as I walked into the house, even though I was angry, I felt both guilty and remorseful for disrupting this natural annual ritual and the miracle of life.