Well, quite a good day in a lot of ways. Just for one thing – it’s been raining here almost without cease, all day and all night nearly every day, for about three weeks, and today suddenly (it was raining sideways last night) it’s not only not raining, it’s not only sunny, it’s warm. It’s one of those spring-in-winter days. Balmy, fresh, smelling wonderful, of mud and wet vegetation and clean air. I went for a walk down to the cemetery, and was looking at a bare tree against the blue sky and noticed it had robins perched all over it. They looked like Xmas decorations – they looked festive. I enjoyed that sight for a minute, then realized that the reason they looked so festive was that they were all facing in the same direction – facing the sun, of course. They’re sunbathing, I realized. They’re soaking up the rays after days of rain and dark. Sticking their orange fronts out into the sun, feeling good. I stood and watched them for awhile. That’s your Bird Moment for today.

But on a less parochial note. There’s also the Supreme Court decision on assisted suicide, a rare vote for reason and against the ‘pro-life’ tyrants. There’s Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf getting to work in Liberia. And, by gum, there’s Michelle Bachelet’s win in Chile. Hurrah.

Michelle Bachelet will be the fourth president from the Concertacion and arguably the most radical. She was politicised by the military coup of September 1973 that brought General Augusto Pinochet to power. Her father was a general in the Air Force who was opposed to the military government and died in prison. She worked undercover for the Socialist Youth and she was held for weeks with her mother, Angelica, in torture and detention centres before being allowed to flee the country in 1975.

She was locked up, and now she’s the president. Sometimes things do get better.

Open Democracy has articles about Bachelet here and here.

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