String of pearls

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I had a ridiculously stressful morning, due entirely to my own incompetence. I mentioned about ten days ago that I’d had to resit my six-monthly blood tests, owing to having failed the white count question; then at the beginning of … Continued

Stellar

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As you know, a key skill requirement for wildlife photography is the capacity to spend long hours in uncomfortable places, waiting for something to happen. Sometimes though, you have the most amazing luck. After snapping my first ever photos of … Continued

Bittern

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After running errands with R this morning I went on to Brandon Marsh in Coventry, where a Eurasian bittern has been reported over the past few days. Arriving in the hide and discovering it packed with birders, my hopes lifted, … Continued

Christmas bokeh

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Many thanks to everyone who said kind things to me after my dental surgery yesterday. The good news is that my face is less painful today; the bad is that the swelling is more noticeable, and the bruising is emerging. … Continued

Who’s smiling now?

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Not me, that’s for sure. Today I arrived at the stage of Operation Save JDO’s Canine Tooth that I’ve been dreading: it involved multiple injections, some cutting, much scraping, some ultrasonic drilling, a bone graft, and then quite a lot … Continued

Sing in exultation

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Busy, busy, busy. More shopping (pretty much all done now); cards written; food order tweaked for the umpteenth time; presents wrapped. I’m writing this while doing accounts with my other brain, and then I’m going to watch Groundhog Day while … Continued

Champagne hangover

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I very rarely get them – largely because a couple of measures of anything is pretty much my limit these days – but there’s something particularly mean and piercing about a fizz hangover. I’ve been mainlining carbohydrate all day in … Continued

Happy birthday to me

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For several weeks R and I had a slightly tense discussion running, on the subject What do you want to do on your birthday? I had a feeling that “Go to a wildlife reserve and take some photos” probably wasn’t … Continued

Barn owl

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After all yesterday’s excitement I could have done with a quiet morning, but R and I had to make an early trip to Stratford, getting up in time for which nearly killed me. I’d been summoned back to the hospital … Continued

One hundred thousand

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The current estimate of the number of starlings roosting in the reed beds at Ham Wall is around 100,000, and having stood in the midst of them and heard the noise they make, I’m not going to quibble with that … Continued