Sunday, 1 May 2011

Welcome May!






May Day - a traditional holiday in many parts of the world - I suppose to celebrate the coming of the sun again after the Winter. Here in our little town there is a large Festival of Food and Drink and a Festival of Tulips, so everywhere is very busy - a signal to locals to stay at home and keep off the roads.

After lunch we went for a walk. Earlier in the day the farmer had seen lapwings attacking a gang of marauding crows; a sure sign that there are baby lapwings about. So we walked through our fields and into our neighbour's marshy field, hoping to see some.

The field is full of sheep and young lambs. We put Tess on the lead but the mother sheep still followed her with their eyes and if she got too near they stamped their feet at her. Several pairs of lapwing circled overhead, making plaintive cries to distract us from their babies, hidden somewhere in the marsh grass. We saw not a sign - even as young as this they instinctively know to keep a low profile for survival.


A mother blackbird was feeding one large, well-fed chick, hardly distinguishable from the grown-ups apart from his fluffy feathers and his soft beak. Even he knew how to lie low as we passed. What a knife-edge life birds must live - always on the lookout for danger.

In the hedge the crab apples in full bloom and on the side of the lane the first buttercup. The trees are almost all out apart from a few tardy ashes and the whole scene is one of pastoral beauty - even if there is a cold East wind blowing.

Happy May Day to you all.

13 comments:

angryparsnip said...

Your walks are so beautiful and I look forward to them.

From where I live, this all looks so idyllic but I understand from reading your post and James Herriot, it is a lot of hard work... but it is very beautiful.

As I child I remember celebrating May Day, with little paper cone type baskets filled with tiny flowers and hung on the door handles.

cheers, parsnip

steven said...

thanks for the gift of a may day walk with you, the farmer and tess!!! steven

Pomona said...

What a beautiful walk - lovely pictures!

Pomona x

The Wife of a Dairyman said...

Yay flowers for you! beautiful pics:)

Heather said...

Lovely springtime photos Pat. It has been quite chilly here today too. On April 30th my father would often quote 'Wake me early Mother dear, for I'm to be Queen of the May'! Our garden has a chorus of tiny 'peep peeps' from various directions as the fledglings in different nests grow stronger. Such a lovely time of year.

Penny said...

Lovely walks, here we have finally had a bit more rain, not enough to appease the farmer here who is worrying about dry days ahead on newly sown paddocks, but so far all is well. I have 2 May day grand duaughters, one here and one in Melbourne, now both 14, I spent the day yesterday with one at our annual foal show, wet and cold but my filly went best in show so a good day.

MarmaladeRose said...

I do enjoy your walks Weaver and your extensive knowledge of all things 'country'.

Ann Somerset Miles said...

Welcome May indeed; lovely post - it's interesting to see the difference n growth between here and the north - I had always thought we were 'late' being high but this year the crabs in the hedgerows are long over.

MorningAJ said...

May Day was beautiful. We've been over to Cambridgeshire and it's been glorious. Glad you had a good day too.

Rare Lesser Spotted said...

Thanks for the lovely spring pictures and the description of your walk (lovely to see the blue skies). xx

H said...

It has been beautiful this year hasn't it! I love lapwings. They are one of my favourite birds.

Tess Kincaid said...

Happy May! Love your glorious part of the world.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Cyber walks are great fun but woudn't it be nice if we could all meet up to walk these fields? Thanks for visiting.