About Roger

Of Swans and Eggs

Having, somewhat pruriently, watched the swans mating, I was hopeful that they were going to stay on the pond.

Pen

Cob

A couple of rather ‘arty’ portraits of the pair.

 

I must confess that I didn’t take much notice of them for a while until I caught them ‘at it’ again:

Cob ‘treading’ pen

Him on the nest again

The cob was behaving quite triumphantly on the nest. Note the coot’s nest just beyond.

 

Things carried on much as hitherto:

although I thought there might be eggs visible in the first of the above pictures.

 

On the 26th April there were definitely eggs!

Eggs!

 

The nest site was in the reeds under the steep bank below Redlands School. The reeds were still not grown enough to hide the nest from the other bank.

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Of Swans

As usual all pictures can be seen bigger by clicking on ’em.
Swans have bred on the pond for the first time since I’ve been here – that’s ten years. According to some it’s longer than that: “Not within living memory” one antique native told me.
One swan overwintered.

Cob on the first of January

Continue reading

More Jan

An apology

I know I’ve said this before but: “I don’t remember people.” It’s not ’cause I don’t like particular people; it’s not ’cause particular people aren’t memorable; it’s not ’cause I can’t talk to particular people.
I just don’t remember people.
Folk I meet while walking, anglers, dog walkers or other walkers, often greet me as if they recognise me, they probably do. In order to not appear totally oafish I tend to meet everyone with a nod, a smile and a cheery “Hi”, as if I know them.
Folk I’ve known and spoken with for yonken are the exception* and possession of a dog also ups your chances of recognition. Names: that’s another of my many failings.
*Not invariably – as related elsewhere, I once blanked my brother.

Apropos nothing at all

Aside: Why is ‘I’ the only pronoun that’s always capitalised in English? Indeed it’s the only non-proper noun that is; correct me if I’m wrong.

Mondegreen: A mondegreen is a mishearing or misinterpretation of a phrase as a result of near-homophony, in a way that gives it a new meaning (wiki). Continue reading

2017

The cat (the little ginger bastard) knocked my hard drive (one of, anyhoo) off the top* of my desk. It buggered up!

So I’ve lost most of 2015 & 2016’s pics although up to 2014 are on another drive.

*Cats, in case you didn’t know, have a major directive, presumably from their leader, that “if two things exist such that one is on top of the other, then the uppermost shall be hurled to the floor without consideration for any consequences”.

So I’ll start 2017 from the beginning: Continue reading

A bit more of October

Forgot to mention in the previous post that Michaelmas Day used to be on the tenth or eleventh of Oct. After this date the devil steals all the sweetness from blackberries.
Old Michaelmas Day falls on 11 October (10 October according to some sources – the dates are the result of the shift from the Julian to the Gregorian calendar). According to an old legend, blackberries should not be picked after this date. This is because, so folklore goes, Satan was banished from Heaven on this day, fell into a blackberry bush and cursed the brambles as he fell into them. In Yorkshire, it is said that the devil had spat on them. According to Morrell (1977), this old legend is well known in all parts of the United Kingdom, even as far north as the Orkney Islands. In Cornwall, a similar legend prevails, however, the saying goes that the devil urinated on them.Wiki
If anyone’s interested, I can confirm that they lose their sweetness as the month ages. Continue reading

Winterfylleð continues

Winterfylleð* was the Old English name for the month which became October. It apparently means winter filling or possibly winter full moon. It was nicked by J.R.R. Tolkien for use in Lord of the Rings.
*ð was pronounced very like ‘th’ so it was winterfilth
Tolkien‘s biography, for the interested.
I read a lot of books, not so many now – t’internet takes up an awful lot of my attention. I recall waaaaay back in Sheffield Central Library picking a book and being scorned by my father: “What do you want that for? Elves and dwarves are kids stuff.” It was, of course, The Hobbit, or There and Back Again. That probably marks the beginning of my lifelong fascination with science fiction and especially with fantasy.
‡or is it dwarfs?
More on my reading matter later.

Meanwhile to carry on in October in this two thousand and sixteenth year of the Common Era:

Sunday 9th October 2016

I love skies so here’s a couple. The first is a view of the pond with a patch of blue above. In the second there’s rather more sky but considerably less blue; it’s taken looking almost due south from ‘Lady Lee Bridge’ on the canal.
Did I mention the alder beetle? Once thought to be extinct in UK, plentiful round here.
Trees on Shireoaks Woodlands are really turning on the autumn colour.
Given the hour and clear sky I always try to get a shot of the moon. Continue reading