Regular readers of this column (hello you three) will know that I am a huge tree lover.
Once I wrote that "I love trees more than I like some people". In hindsight that seems a little bit unkind, if indeed a little bit true.
Stately oaks in front of ancient buildings, gorgeous pohutukawa lining the beachfront, flamboyant palms lining avenues, the alluring purple of the jacaranda, winter gardens heady with lemon and grapefruit trees. Camellia stunners. Trees ... they just make me happy. Their company brings tranquillity.
After all, as my friend posted on Facebook this week "Silence is better than bulls*** ".
It is not better than birds*** though, which I admit is the downside to trees.
Much as I love the fact my house is surrounded by trees, and that I wake every morning to the soothing song of the birds, I am singing a different song entirely when I exit the house each morning and find my red car covered in white splodges. It was so bad one time that when I parked the car in the work carpark someone actually complained to me it was making them feel sick.
I am convinced that the perpetrators of such crimes are not my beautiful tui and bellbirds but big, dirty, old seagulls.
Only a seagull could produce such dramatic output. Tauranga seagulls not only seem to suffer from irritable bowel syndrome, but are irritating to boot. Not content with stripping the paint off your car with their acidic poop, they return to annoy the hell out of you by mass stalking your icecream when you are sitting on the beach.
Take a sandwich out of your lunch box and you have a scene from Hitchcock's The Birds.
So at first I felt little sympathy for the Welsh seagull, nicknamed on Facebook as Gullfrazie, who bit off more than it could chew when it fell into a vat of curry and came out a vivid shade of orange.
First of all because he is a seagull. Second of all because he is Welsh - the ones taking on the All Blacks this weekend. So for the sake of loyalty to the boys in black I feel like I am not a fan of the seagull.
And third of all because of his dubious morals. He was actually trying to pinch some meat out of a bin of chicken tikka masala at a food factory in Wales.
Turning orange was just retribution for his crime. Karma if not Korma. Like in Aesop's tale of The Seagull and the Kite, he deserves his orange status for he really had no business to stick his beak into the curry.
I am glad he was not hurt or burned though. Only that morning my colleague had mused that being killed by a beach umbrella was not only a terrible death but such a horrifically random way to die. However, we agreed that falling into a hot pot of curry was far worse in both suffering and embarrassment.
Good then that Gullfrazie was okay. After vets cleaned him up (noting he smelled "amazing, he really smelled good"), and re-waterproofed his feathers he was released back into the wild. He lives to poop another day, and I am happy for him. I am also happy that he is unlikely to fly from Wales to New Zealand, as it is hard enough to deal with the white poop of Tauranga's seagulls, I don't think I could handle it in orange. Bird poop is a bit of a yucky inconvenience but bird poop is still a small price to play for the privilege of living amongst majestic trees. Some even say it is lucky in which case perhaps we should be grateful to the gulls of the Bay for showering us with such fortune.