As I enter this place and take my usual seat under the giant boulder ,the wildlife take up to ten minutes to relax back into their normal background state.
This state of being for the wildlife is going about their normal business when there are no predators or other disturbances around.
As time has passed, the birds that live here have got to know me, and my ways, so they relax more and more. On each subsequent visit, they can see the threat to them, their young, or to the integrity of their territories has diminished.
I am becoming a part of the normal background of this corner of the mountain.
The process accelerated this morning.
As I was sitting, a beautiful bird (the Bonellis warbler) flew down onto a plant not ten feet from me.
She watched me closely until she perceived I still posed no threat even from this much closer distance, and I saw her tiny form begin to relax.
So much so, that she dropped into a small pool and began to bathe, playing and splashing, now totally at ease with my presence. After a while, she flew into the fig tree to dry and cool down.
All of the other birds here were watching this too. None of them had ever come this close before.
Within five minutes, a young stonechat flew to a post even closer and just sat there looking around, until in its own time, it flew off in search of a more engaging subject.
As it did so, that most shy of the small birds, the nightingale suddenly appeared on top of a boulder, some fifteen feet to my right.
At that moment, I knew I had been accepted by the birds into their place.