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Showing posts from August, 2018

Last day of August

We set off to walk around the mega field, but when we arrived the half growing corn was being harvested.  Far too much dust and noise, so we chose a different field to circumnavigate!   We hadn't walked very far along the field edge and I thought that the few birds in the field, away to our right hand side, looked a bit odd.  I stood and shielded my eyes as I peered into the sun when a voice, from nowhere, said 'Hello".  That was a surprise!  And there was a character who would have stepped quite nicely out of Gerald Durrell's My Family and Other Animals.   Quite eccentrically dressed from head to toe in various sorts of camouflage material, adorned with a number of badges and bits and bobs, and accompanied by a beautiful black and white spaniel, this chap emerged from a ramshackle hide on the edge of the field.  It was a quite a large affair and I did briefly wonder if he actually lived there!  The odd looking birds were his own version of decoy birds, only they we

Here today, gone tomorrow?

There was a big gathering of the clans this morning, around 8 o'clock.  Swallows and house martins were lining up along the telegraph wires, around two hundred in number I reckon.  I think that today may have been the day they have chosen to head south for the winter.  I can hardly bear to see them go.  In fact, I can't bear to see them go.  Their swooping, soaring, chattering, skimming across water and teasing of Ted has given breathtaking joy and pleasure this summer.  I will definitely be counting the weeks until they come back again.  Brave little souls, psyching themselves up for that long perilous journey.   Little miracles. Travel safely.

Mellow fruitfulness

Our little Victoria plum tree is absolutely dripping with fruit!  I do applaud it.  The tree has weathered the beast from the east at the start of the year, Storm Hector in June, and a long hot summer with a few buckets of water which I have chucked its way, and look how true it has been to itself! And what do you do when you have lots of luscious plums?  Make cake, of course.  And no doubt jam too!

Wednesday afternoon walk

One of the things I love best about this time of year is the opportunity for new walks.  The fields are being harvested, one by one, once the crop has been cleared away the coast is clear for walking around the edges, or across the middle - whatever.  The dogs and I had an enjoyable late afternoon walk around a new field yesterday.  The hedgerows are beginning to look very fruitful and abundant. One the way I saw a couple of things I haven't seen for a long time, both the product of tiny gall wasps.  On a wild rose there were one or two Robin's Pincushions , which are feathery looking rose-tinted galls, created by the larvae of a tiny gall wasp,  Diplolepis rosea .   Further along, growing on an oak in the hedgerow, I found lots of oak apples.  I have rarely seen them since I was a little girl. I knew then that they had bugs inside, I now know they have been created by the o ak apple gall wasp,  Biorhiza pallida.  There is an Oak Apple Day, or  Restoration Day, observ

Late August garden notes

There is a distinct shift in light, air temperature and colour in the great outdoors as we lurch towards the end of August.  September will be here in a few days and I think we can feel quite satisfied that we have had a good summer this year!  Our little garden is still full of colour, which we are enjoying very much.  

Drif t e r s

Mr Gaucho and I are in serious danger of become Drif t e r s.  To explain more clearly, we have just visited a new cafe outside North Berwick, it is called Drift, and it has a perch on the clifftops above Canty Bay, with views out to sea which will take your breath away. You can look across the water to the Bass Rock, west along the Firth of Forth towards Edinburgh, and north to Fife.  It also has great hot chocolate, coffee and cake. I hope that they may soon offer things like soup and savoury things, but one step at a time is a good way to start a new venture, and judging by the busy crowded seating space inside the cafe  (a series of wood clad containers) it's all looking very promising.

30 years on

Unbelievably, it's 30 years ago today my brother and I lost our sister Lucy, in a car crash on the A30 in Cornwall.  She remains an unforgettable person and I will always miss her.

Monday walk

This morning Mr Gaucho dropped the dogs and me along the coast for us to walk home.  Here are some of the lovely things we saw on the way.   A desert of lapwings! A Small Copper butterfly   And a parcel of oystercatchers    with an interloper in the form of a curlew! Not too far away, across the water, Edinburgh was rocking with festival goers and all sorts of crazy creative stuff going on.   We walked in warm sunshine with the sound of gentle waves running in as the tide turned and wafts of rugosa roses and salty ozone.  Lovely!