Monday, 7 January 2013

A Quiet Day.

Today is what the farmer would call a 'quiet day'.   There is not a breath of wind, the sky is a uniform grey, the temperature is warm for the time of year, and nothing much is moving here in the depths of the country.   Virtually the only sound is that of the male robin - one every hundred yards or so, singing its beak off with what sounds like a song of joy but is actually an agressive song saying 'get off my patch.'

There is no sign of activity in the fields as Tess and I walk down the lane.   But then, there wouldn't be - the fields are so wet that any vehicle that ventured on to the soil would be instantly bogged down.   Early last week the farmer was able to pull a friend's tractor out of the mire with his new, bigger version.   Dare I say, naughtily, the first time he has actually been able to boast 'mine's bigger than yours!'

Although it is warm there are only minimal signs of any growth.   Buds on some of the trees are quite fat but a long way from beginning to actually grow.   The stretch of alders by the beckside - alder is one of my favourite trees - is showing a faint tinge of red in the tops and the alder catkins hang dark and hard, waiting for warmer days to make them break out.

There are a few berries left here and there but they are almost rotten and look most unappetizing.   I really wonder what our birds find to eat away from the bird table, although the farmer says that with the fields being so wet there will be plenty of grubs for them to search for.   Also because this is a pheasant-rearing area, I suspect that a lot of wild birds frequent the pheasant pens in an effort to share some of the spoils.

Speaking of pheasants, this morning I have been to the Physiotherapist for my six-weekly visit (the farmer had to drive me there as I am again unable to drive) and on the way back - only a distance of around ten miles - we were conscious of just how many dead cock pheasants there were on the road.   The farmer says they have already started to fight over the hen pheasants (men never learn do they?) and get so involved in a fight on the grass verge that they just don't notice the oncoming traffic.   I suppose the only good thing about it is that these dead bodies are instant food for the hundreds of crows that fly around.   Every carcase is surrounded by pecking crows and they only rise up when the car is almost on top of them.   By tomorrow there will be no trace left, apart from a few feathers that will blow away in the wind.

A friend is up in the Dales from Kent and I am hoping to see her within the next day or two - it is quite a long time since we met, so it will be lovely to see her and catch up on all the news.   She is a much travelled lady and has not been back from Australia for all that long.   And all this in spite of sadness in her life.   It makes my silly little black-out such a petty thing when I think of the things that others have to put up with, so I am determined not to let it get me down.   Keep on blogging - that's what I intend to do.  




And to cheer me up even further, I came back into the house through the front garden and saw that the Winter Aconites are already up - their little green frills are already showing so now they just have to turn their little yellow faces to the sun (if it doesn't snow first). 


 

10 comments:

jill said...

Weather much the same here today Pat although I notice it is just starting to rain.Enjoy your visit from your friend.Love Jill xx

Pondside said...

You feature crows this morning too - across the continent and ocean, we're on the same wavelength, and that is one of the pleasures of blogging.

Reader Wil said...

What a delightful post! .I hope your back is better than this morningYou talked about the dead birds on the roads. In Tasmania you'll find so much road kill of wallabies, wombats and even Tasmania Devils. Have a great time with your friend.

Heather said...

Size does matter then! We have bulbs showing all over the garden but I'm sure they will have a rude awakening one morning. I love your photo of the alders and those dear little aconites - a message of hope. Enjoy your friend's visit, stay positive and stock up the wood pile - it's sure to get colder very soon.

Arija said...

Isn't it a thrill to see the vibrant green of aconite popping out of the ground? Grey days are nowhere near as bad when the first signs of spring appear.
So orry about those silly cock pheasants, they are such beautiful birds.

Hildred and Charles said...

The only thing green around here is my envy, Pat - we had five inches of snow last night, and another five forecast for the night hours. Still, it is very beautiful. Take care....

MorningAJ said...

You found catkins. Though they aren't quite as far out as they are down here. I spotted some more at teh weekend and they are really quite yellow.

A few "quiet" days might be welcome after all the rain you've had up there.

Take care, and enjoy your meeting with your friend.

Gwil W said...

I'm always amazed by the insights of your farmer. The man is a fount of knowledge and wisdom concerning the local countryside. Keep reporting!

The Weaver of Grass said...

Thanks for visiting.

Golden West said...

I'll be holding all positive thoughts and best wishes for you when you see the specialist, Pat.