After some time, I started on a fourth circuit, only to be interrupted halfway. Three crows flew down from a neighboring roof and alighted in a row on the fence top, some several paces ahead of me. Intrusive lot, dropping down and obstructing my round. They were clearly not from these parts, and as I saw things, had no right to this fence. "Clear the way," I called. The first crow regarded me with a smirk. The second crow surveyed the master's garden. The third crow cleaned his beak on the end of a bamboo upright. No doubt he'd just come from eating something. I stood in place for a full three minutes, patiently awaiting their response. A popular name for crows, they say, is Kanzaemon, and Kanzaemon fits to a tee. Wait though I did, there was no response and no sign of flight. Having no other recourse, I cautiously advanced. Kanzaemon number one extended his wings. Finally recognizing my authority, he was ready, I thought, to effect his escape. Instead, he merely shifted his posture from right-facing to left-facing. Bloody rascal! Had we been on level ground, I'd not have hesitated to dispatch this lot. Regrettably, though, on this fence-top path, that was challenging enough to begin with, I was in no position to face off against Kanzaemon. That being said, the prospect of staying put and waiting on the three to depart was equally unappealing. First and foremost, my legs can't withstand it. The other party, being winged creatures, had alighted here as matter of course. Accordingly, they were here in no hurry to move on. I was on my fourth circuit and duly worn out. This performance, which doubles as my exercise, is no less taxing than walking a tightrope. Even with no form of obstruction, my balance was already precarious. There was no easy reckoning with these three up ahead now, clad in black and blocking my path. If it came down to it, I'd have no recourse but to break my routine and jump to the ground. Perhaps it was not worth the trouble. After all, I was outnumbered, and my foes were an unknown entity, flown in from parts unknown.