During this time, a remarkable thing happened. The birds flourished. Without cars on the roads, the birds flocked to suburban neighbourhoods. They danced in the trees, unafraid of the thunder of air traffic overhead. They filled lawns, they called, they came close, unafraid of us mere humans walking amongst them.
The most audacious of all, was the sleek, darting Tui. Dark, lustrous, refined, these birds are iconic to New Zealand. Their iridescent shimmer is a reminder of summer, of bright blue skies. For us, they are a reminder of when we stood, looking up, and heard nothing but birdsong.