Underlining puffins

I saw a puffin. Just one. It was early. Flying around the islands, looking worried as only a puffin can. Where were all the others? It was the first puffin of the season. I, of course, was delighted! My dear hosts, who barely knew me before I landed on their doorstep, had taken me out knowing it was unlikely we would see one, but keen to try as I wanted it so much. Thank goodness for the early puffin – smiles and excitement all round. There were amazing crab sandwhiches and cider, and many other lovely things, but that’s another story. The next year at Christmas I received a little puffin statue, a momento of that exciting day.
More recently I didn’t receive a puffin mug. A line had been drawn under giving me any more puffinalia commemorating my sighting of a single, anxious bird. And I’m glad (though it was apparently a very beautiful mug). I think one should not own more puffinalia than one has seen puffins.

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