Tag Archives: mistle thrush

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.

 

 

The third day

With nine visitors with learning difficulties and our normal Wednesday six, we had a lively day as everyone decided there were no strangers, just friends they hadn’t met.

Today’s pizza count was only 14, but I had to prepare all the dough myself, ready for topping (it’s a long story featuring a glitch in timing).  Actually I made dough for 18, but we only used enough for 12, and took my two emergency gluten-free bases out of the freezer.  I used the extra dough, with a selection of olives and fresh-picked rosemary to make a loaf. It’s quite good, though the flour is just cheap flour, rather than strong white.  I didn’t take a picture, just made a cheese sandwich. It was good.

My arthritis is now playing up, as kneading the dough for 18 pizzas is not quite what the doctor ordered. Strange how when you’re young and healthy you don’t look at a pile of pizza dough as a challenge. How things change.

The keets are looking perky, and several of them are exhibiting a tendency to have a go at flying. The grey one is actually developing a taste for showbiz by the look of things and Julia says it’s almost impossible to put your hand in the pen without it throwing itself at you for selection.

The woodpecker came back to the feeder, the sun shone, a mistle thrush did its stormcock act in a tree top and  all in all it was the sort of day that makes it all worthwhile.

Things that went badly – checking up on allergies. Things that went well – emergency gluten-free pizza bases, new friendships, Gemma’s felted teddy bear (made with alpaca wool).