Wednesday 31 May 2017

Let's Have a Bee-In

They had "Be-Ins" in the 60s, but in the summer every evening can be a bee-in. Popped round my folks, there were 3 species playing in the blue stuff that might be called campanella, or the frail herbs that the bees suck at quickly as the stem bends right over.

I tried to pet a common carder worker bee, pollen baskets full, but it wouldn't let me.

The sun sank slowly below the rooftops. I went for a run accompanied only by birdsong. It was beautiful.


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 31.05.17

Tuesday 30 May 2017

Late Night Hoggie!

Came across this little fellow as I walked home last night, just crossing the busy road after leaving my drive.

It went over the kerb like a hovercraft, and trotted down the bank onto South Parade Park, where I just gave a quick excuse me and took the one snap.

It was a hoglet again, seen a few this year, perhaps it's the same one each time. I'm just glad to see one, although as with any animal my heart goes in my mouth when I see one on the road.


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 30.05.17

Monday 29 May 2017

A Mini Meadow on the Run

After a weekend of cricket, I've been exhausted as usual on the Monday, but I still managed to get out for a 7km run, and a visit to Rumbles, on my Grange Road Farmland route.

I haven't run this way for a little while, and so I was thrilled to find that at the entrance to the land off Bowbridge Road, a little mini meadow has erupted with some corncockle, poppies, white campion, groundsel and some other species.

There was a bit of rain in the air, but the bumblebees were using the poppies to nectar off, no doubt enjoying the shelter they were getting. They were certainly taking their time!


All images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 29.05.17

Saturday 27 May 2017

Victory at Last, Victory at Last, thank the lord almighty Victory at Last

Ok, it wasn't a Martin Luther King level achievement today, but we won a game.

Our little band of third team players took off to play Ellerslie IV, a team that boasts a compact and well appointed club ground, but their lower level teams are banished to out grounds.

Clifton Playing Fields was our home for the day, a seemingly rather grubby facility on the outskirts of Nottingham.

A pre match French Cricket knockabout in the surreally large toilets was about as much time as we spent in the dressing rooms. They were a bad, bad place, disease lurking in every corner. We lugged our gear out to the ground itself, and there it stayed.

Skipper won the toss and had us fielding. We made a good start, although I had a slight rat on as I hadn't been given the new ball. We had them 4 down before I got on to bowl, and I wasn't good enough to get any wickets myself today. Or rather lucky enough, as usual I went past the outside edge about 30 thousand times without getting a nick. Bowled rather quick at times, by my standards. I don't think Mitch Johnson would have been impressed.

7 overs, 4 maidens 0-8 I would have been thrilled at a year ago, but I'm a wicket hunter now.

As ever these days, we have other very good bowlers, and we kept them to 64-9 off 40. It was a tricky wicket, to be fair, and we fielded brilliantly.

After tea, we got on with batting, and I went off to investigate the grounds. It looked dull, but there was a butterfly meadow with some bees, and a little stream where some large fish, probably chub, were cruising around. A fly rod would have been the best way of getting them. Swallows skimmed the water, and at the other end of the ground a noisy flock of house martins picked at insects among the tree tops.

I thought I'd have time for all this, and some sketching too, but alas their bowlers were just as good as ours, and we struggled. I was down to go in at 10, but it became clear I'd be needed, and at about 45-8, in I went.

My first partner went quite quickly, so it was soon the number 11, a young cricketer who isn't a great batsman, but has a strong head, and a good cricket brain. We agreed to take any runs we could, anywhere, anyhow, snicks, nicks, pads and thin air. I struggled, he smiled and swung. One by one, we got the runs. Only I wasn't counting. I didn't look at the scoreboard.

LBW appeals came and went. I was dropped at gully. My nerves were all over the place, but I managed to get bat on ball most of the time. Eventually my partner informed us we had two runs left go get, with a very jangly me on strike and a new bowler coming on. I missed the first two balls, but produced my best shot for the end, an off drive that beat everyone.

We had won!

I've never done that before. I only got 10, but they were the most important 10 of my career.


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 27.05.17

Friday 26 May 2017

Garden Evening

Well it was beautiful all day - I'm glad my environmental role at work allows me to get out in the sun and take a few photographs around our campus - lots of tiny little mining bees working on ragwort, as well as their big bumble cousins on cranesbill and elderflower.

Tonight I visited my folks, and sat and had tea under a mega parasol, and took photographs of their small but wonderfully wild garden.

Somewhere my mother is amongst it all!


All text and images copyright CreamCRackeredNature 26.05.17

Wednesday 24 May 2017

Light Light Light

I've had a really really hot and muggy 5km run this evening, a beautiful evening at that, without a cloud in the sky hardly.

It was hard going, but worth it to see the world in a softer light without worrying about a cricket ball flying around.

Enjoy the lights.


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 24.05.17

Monday 22 May 2017

All the Pictures!!!

We've had sun this last few days, for what seems like the first time in a couple of weeks T-Shirt temperatures have been with us again.

Consequently there's been a lot to see, not just at cricket matches. I've been in the park and around town the last three days; in the cemetery and around the lakes. There was been a ton of things to see, and photograph while the swifts scream wildly above.

Check out in particular the volucella bombylans imitating a red tailed bumblebee - what a magnificent insect! - and the big queen wasp.

I've loved it.


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 22.05.17