Saturday, 21 August 2010

A week or so ago, my sister, Kath and I drove up to the the Upper Derwent Valley in Derbyshire. We had gone there to see the heather which was showing very nicely. Here, we walked a gentle track to climb to a view overlooking Ladybower Reservoir. The water levels were quite low, which is a result of the hot dry spring and early summer we've had.
I love the outdoors when its not too hot.
We had not thought of it until we got to parking the car. It was the 11th August and the next day was the 'Glorious 12th' - the start of the shooting season. The  parking area was full and it turned out there were lots of organised groups wanting to get a glimpse of the heather before shooting started. We did see some Grouse on the moors, little did they know they might be fleeing for their lives in the coming days.

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Never too old to learn

Some weeks ago and due to circumstances beyond my control, I was forced to buy (at great expense) a new potato peeler. It was a man sized one, big and chunky.
Soon after, I was busy preparing vegetables as I'd always done. Well, while peeling a large carrot I felt the blade touch a finger nail. Didn't think too much about it at the time but later on, the nail felt a little 'uncomforable'. Imagine my surprise when I realised that that potato peeler had taken off a neat semicircle of nail right down to the soft tissue underneath. Its a funny feeling, pressing soft tissue through that 'hole'.
No matter, it had been one of those days when every thing was conspiring to get me. The bed post had jumped out and nearly managed to remove a toe nail (ouch that hurt!) A cupboard had jumped out and whacked me on the thigh. Door jam had repositioned itself in my way.

Do you get days like that?

I've tried to work out how I ever got my finger into a position that was any where near the blade. I still don't know but the evidence speaks for itself.
The finger nail was a bit tender but not an issue until it was time to trim. I ended up with a notch which seemed very capable of snagging on anything and every thing. The cure was to trim it down as far as I could thus removing all possibilities of snagging.
The moral of the story is be careful or
to peel the potatoes. [ lol -:) ]

Friday, 13 August 2010

RSPB Bempton Cliffs

About 10 days ago, Kath, my sister, and I went up to Bempton Cliffs near the town of Bridligton. The purpose of the visit was to see and photograph Puffin. The cliffs of this bird reserve are about 400 feet high and is an important UK breeding site for Puffin, Guillemot, Razorbill, Kittywake, Gannet and other cliff nesting sea birds. Look closely at the cliff in the foreground and each white dot is a Gannet. The gannet has a wing span of about 6 foot. Quite a large bird.
A different angle on part of the previous photo. The darker birds are the juvenile Gannet who are not yet ready to fly the nest.

A closer shot of the same cliff.

You guessed it, most of the smaller bird species had already flown the nest.
Here are just a few remaining Kittywake. No Puffin, no razorbill, no Guillemot.
We did see a few puffin. Just left of center is a small group on the sea below the cliffs. A last years (I think) Gannet is flying overhead.
Oh well, we'll have to be earlier next year if we want to photograph puffin.

Waddington Air show 2010

Please do not have a go at me for promoting machines of war. I see the following as engineering successes.
I liked this shot for the vapour trails. A sense of true power.

I think this is a wierd angle - not seen in flight.

XH558. Flying again and up were she belongs. I've actually sat in the cockpit of this aircraft!

2 of the Red Arrows. The get pretty close don't they?