Last night, in the final few moments of light, I sat on the decking with the dog, watching the spectacular acrobatics of the bats. And, a first for me, listening to them too. At first I thought it was the flapping of their wings that I could hear, but I quickly realised it was their voices. A gentle, barely audible, click-click-click, getting more and more rapid as they came nearer. They swooped in and out of the barn, sometimes in one doorway, out of another, sometimes out through the empty window openings, and around my head.

Tomorrow is my last night here this year.

I haven't seen a television since early June. I assume, by now, that it will have evolved into a silvery-voiced siren-cum-oracle that has no need of an off-button.

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