Tag Archives: dancing

Birds, Butterflies and Blogging

To be accurate the title really should be Birds and Blogging as there are no butterflies about, so if you have come here looking for butterflies I must apologise.

I’ve just been talking to a pair of birdwatchers who were going round the nature trail. The birds decided to cooperate for once and as we spoke we saw Goldfinches, Greenfinches, Great Tits, Blue Tits, Chaffinches, a House Sparrow, a male Reed Bunting and a Robin. Two pairs of bullfinches and half a dozen fieldfares flew past too. That means I’ve seen as many bullfinches in a week as I normally see in a year.

They had seen Pied Wagtails, Bullfinches in the hedgerows and Linnets drinking from a puddle on the way round.

I filled the feeders in the middle of the morning and one of the Goldfinches refused to fly off until I was three feet away. It started trying to stare me down when I was about twelve feet away and almost growled at me…

They are much more aggressive than I realised. If it was five feet taller I really wouldn’t fancy my chances against it.

Julia is having a day off. It’s the first day she’s missed in five years so I suppose I can allow it. She’s at the graduation of Number One son. He didn’t bother going to the ceremony when he graduated from his first degree but now he has a second he’s decided to go. The fact his girlfriend is graduating at the same time may have some bearing on his new-found eagerness for academic ceremonial.

Julia described the whole affair as “Like Hogwarts without the Sorting Hat.”

The dance rehearsals went well this morning, and the group has been producing friendship bracelets under instruction from Dave, our co-founder. Julia and Dave were working for Nottingham City council when she was told she had to re-apply for her job and he came to the end of a fixed term contract. Somehow this led to a discussion that became Quercus Community. I can’t complain because this turned out to be the best job in the world for the last five years. It doesn’t pay much, but I do have plenty of time for birds, butterflies and blogging. I also get to do things that don’t begin with “B” but I can’t be bothered to list them all. The range of words describing my activities over the last five years start with alpaca and end with zoology so it’s been interesting.

It’s Dave’s birthday soon and we’ve had cake to celebrate. He’s claiming to be “thirty next birthday” and everyone is nodding politely. I will make no comment.

As you can see from the photos, he threw himself fully into the choreography, though when I asked the group who was the problem in the Dreamcoat number they were unanimous in pointing him out.

 

 

Bollywood and black skies

Today we had Bollywood dancing, chickens and black storm clouds, just to name a few things. And pom-poms. They are becoming the bane of my life. Julia says we need 20 per wreath and as everyone will want to make a wreath that’s 140 pom-poms. While Julia and some of the team were out measuring climate data (our penultimate session) I was left in charge of the pom-pom squad. I made six. The other three broke the plastic rings several times, failed to achieve pom-pomness in  a number of different ways and, finally, managed to break the only one they actually made.

Yes, they broke a pom-pom. Not the plastic ring, an actual woolly pom-pom.

That sound you can hear is my spirit breaking.

In the afternoon, with a squad of three, Julia managed four pom-poms.

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Proper free range chickens

The chickens are looking good – we finally have a distinct farmyard flock – feathered in a variety of blacks (from their Minorca fathers) and with a selection of head feathering from their Polish ancestors. They are looking quite distinctive, though they could probably do with a bit of new blood in the coming year as they are all the offspring of one hen and (possibly) two cockerels.

Weather has been iffy, as you can see from the photos, though it hasn’t broken yet, there are still a few autumnal leaves about and our Albanian taxi driver brought us some lemons picked from his father’s orchard when he visited last week. They always look much nicer than shop lemons, which I suspect are selected for thick skin and travelling qualities.  The Albanian lemons always seem thinner skinned and better-flavoured.

Finally, dancing. The whole group is practising for the dance at the Christmas Party. They are full of determination and have been watching instructional videos to get more moves. You have to admire their perseverance and work ethic. Originally just two of them were going to dance, after doing some belly-dancing at a project they attend on Fridays, but it has now spread so we have five dancers.

What with dancing and our rendition of I’ve got a lovely bunch of Coconuts this is going to be a party to remember, even before we get to the song about the coat of many colours.

As you look at the dance photos hum the tune of Jai Ho.

Now try to get it out of your head.

I think my work here is done…