Sunday 31 May 2020

Around the Lake

Busy day today, a longish read, a longish walk and an evening 6km run. I met up with my stepfather outside the family home, at my preferred social distance of about 10 metres, and found some nice things to photograph.

Yes, the kids were partying again, but it didn't leave me in a seething rage this time, my medication seems to helping at the moment. I try and smile at everyone I make eye contact with on the paths, I'm doing my best.

But it is still very hard, and I find people freely mixing a difficult sight.


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 31.05.20

Saturday 30 May 2020

Run to South Muskham

Not the most inspired title I've ever come up with, but it's a hot day and my brain has fried a little bit, beyond the production of dazzling titles. Running to South Muskham today is what I did.

It's a pretty village, but the tun there is less so involving as it does going past the sugar factory whose slurry pits are still emitting a horrendous stench despite the fact that production is not taking place at the moment.

The caravan park is empty, but the grassy stands are still mown immaculately.

Across the Trent next, and a little egret was hunting on a gravel spit in the low lying river.

Then there is the sterile space that is the fishing lake, where on a Saturday many years ago the water would be covered in colourful sailing boats racing round the buoys.

Then the village of South Muskham, where the gardeners have gone to town on the flowers, the church clock is wrong and there is a telephone box stuffed full of DVDs and books for everyone.

And where everything seemed totally normal.


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 30.05.20

Friday 29 May 2020

Feeding off Brambles

Two hour walk today, getting slightly sunburnt despite the factor 15, and checking out how the newly flowering brambles are attracting pollinators, mainly honeybees and tree bumblebees, that most successful recent migrant from Europe.

Also I noticed today that there has been an emergence of small tortoiseshell butterflies, a second flight of freshly painted flutterers rising up from the grass and sunning themselves on the bramble leaves.

Although not for long enough that I could get a photo!

I also noticed cinnabar moths on the wing at the ground, which was a welcome sight.

I've just cooked some horrendous bacon noodles and feel rather billious, keep going outside to watch the swifts high overhead, and also a buzzard today.

The last few days have gone better. Slightly.


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 28.05.20

Thursday 28 May 2020

The House at Valerian Corner - Redux

It is such a bright place to visit, a land mark in the village of Hawton, and the only place locally I've seen a hummingbird hawk moth.

It is The House at Valerian Corner, a house beyond the church that on a bright summer's day glows red with its verge full of valerian.

I ran out there tonight, a 7.5km run that I thought would be after the heat of day, but turned out not to be. It was a bit of a slog, although my splits weren't too bad.

No beautiful moths today, just a solitary bumble. But there are a few more hot days to see what pretty buzzers and flutterers I can find.


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 28.05.20

Wednesday 27 May 2020

Swan Family and Giant Fish

Out to the river today, with plenty to see on my two hour walk under a warm sun.

First up, where the rowing club were just starting to come back to life, there were two big carp basking in the River Devon under the bridge, a peaceful spot they would be shortly forced to vacate by a flotilla of skiffs and canoes.

I also spotted my first male orange tip butterfly in a while, very late in the season to see one of those fellows out and about. It's the end of the season, sadly, for this beautiful species.

Cottage lane nature reserve was full of damselflies, and I saw my first dragonfly of the year, a female broad bodied chaser I think. I also flushed a skylark up from next to one of the ponds.

Down by the river, no hirundines again, but a heron and an egret were having a squabble over fishing rights on the weir, with the heron getting rather testy with its smaller, but prettier, companion. A common tern was hunting along the power station reach, a swallow of the seas normally but you do get them around here as they have nesting grounds nearby.

Sweetest sight was a little further round back towards town. Cobb and Penn were out taking their new family of six cygnets for a peaceful swim along a mirror river.

They are pretty now, but when they grow up a bit, not so much!


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 27.05.20

Tuesday 26 May 2020

What is this thing "Book"?

Took myself off to the cricket ground this afternoon, not for the purposes of running, or even walking - although I did a bit of that - but to actually lie in the sun and read.

I have hardly looked at a book in weeks, normally most of my reading is done quietly at the pub with a pint by my hand; no pub-going has thus resulted in no reading as I've been entertaining myself with online story telling in the form of various sci fi adaptions of Dungeons and Dragons.

Or watching a couple read "Dune" over several weeks.

Lockdown has turned me into a mega-nerd basically.

So today, I read the first 50 odd pages of a Stephen Baxter sci fi novel. I wish I'd chosen something a bit easier to get into!

The trick is now is to keep up with this habit over the upcoming weeks. I've missed books.


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 26.05.20

Monday 25 May 2020

Cricket Returns to our Ground

I feel I've had a less wasted day today, with a double chunk of walking and running in the sun today, meaning I've been trundling about for about three hours today one way or another.

Under ECB guidance, we can now practice at cricket nets in a socially distanced and supervised fashion, and one of our main cricketing families took advantage of that to have a hit around. It may be that we can have matches of a sort later in the summer; hopefully this will be the case even if they are only friendly matches.

At the entrace of our ground is a late blossoming bush that is very pungent and attracting no end of flies, and a few bees too. I've just come in from watching the swifts screeching around my flat, with a low flying squadron of 4 being escorted by a top cover of another 4.

So, a few hours left of the day, I hope I can use the, wisely.


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 26.05.20