Letter To You

Today’s title is from one of my birthday presents-it is the latest album from the Boss (Bruce Springsteen) and I am enjoying listening to it as I write. Excellent!!!!

Actually feeling my age because I did perform live today at Kingshill House Dursley-yes a live performance! Brilliantly organised pop up event for Halloween for the local community. Slightly different for me because it felt I was telling on a conveyor belt- the young people were picking up bags with activities and snacks in they then came to me in a marquee (wearing a visor of course) every ten minutes -the ages were mixed and the time with each group was a constraint. So I told an Estonian Folk Tale and repeated it  for each group with a few tweaks I did this non stop for 90 minutes (same length as a football match but with no half time!) It had to be visual so it was a  physical effort. My visor got steamed up so I was peering out at the audience through a fog! I will need to look at this!

Finally I took Esther a friend of mine’s granddaughter  Bird Watching yesterday. Delighted that we saw not one Marsh Harrier but three! I’ve never seen that many all together in Gloucestershire before! Plenty of Curlew, Fieldfares and Starlings as well. We were hoping for a murmuration but the Starlings were in small groups of 30 to 50 birds -hopefully will see some over the next couple of months. (Picture below is not mine but one I found of a Harrier.)



The Rule of Six!!!!!

Took this picture yesterday between the heavy rain showers-should I report them?

The rain  was biblical yesterday it was more than Cats and Dogs, Horses and Cows-more like Hippos and Rhinos! We went out for lunch to celebrate my birthday and the Hail was so heavy the roads were covered and it looked like snow.

I found last night’s football disappointing; the Mighty Hatters were playing reasonably well  until the opposition Forest had a man sent off and surprisingly they became the better team. It finished level in the end.

More pictures from yesterday’s walk below. Always seem to snap birds (I’ve left off the Grebes!)


Catch Up Jobs!!!!!!

One thing many of us have done in 2020 when everything has closed in around us is doing those jobs that have been put off for ages! We have just cleared out our shed at the weekend which has been a muddled mess for some time. Today we filled our camper van Cedric with rubbish and went to our pre booked tip visit. Shed now looks pristine now- will I still find things!

Many of you will know I volunteer at Wick Court a Farm for City Children taking young people Bird Watching and on a Thursday afternoon  I am Story Teller in Residence telling stories in the marvellous Round House. Sadly no children have been at the farm since March and unlikely to be a long time before they return. So my other big job I have completed was to clean up the bags, books and binoculars. I’ve finished that as well! I am hoping to some fund raising for the charity in the near future-watch this space!

“This Day Is Called The Feast of Crispian”

A Shakespeare quote for the title as it is the anniversary of Agincourt today. I left the a in Crispian sometimes it is left out! I have enjoyed the different interpretations of the play over the years. October has three significant historical battles the other two are Hastings and Trafalgar. One thing I find slightly bizarre is in my village we fly the flag on Trafalgar Day but not on the National Health Service Day -make of that want you want even though I am proud that one of my ancestors  was on the Victory at Trafalgar and brought Nelson back afterwards.

Halloween Story

Thought I would start with some Story Telling news for a change! I am live Story Telling for young people at Kingshill House on Friday and it has to have a Halloween theme. Might need to find a costume and props for this. Did some work today on finding and learning stories as preparation. Also slowly working on developing a virtual capacity for the next few months because unlikely to have audience opportunities!

As I mentioned yesterday it is the hope that gets you. An excellent win today by the Mighty Hatters to start dreaming!

Got That Wrong!!!!

  I posted my blog yesterday afternoon and I was mentioning the climbs coming up in Sunday’s cycling. Later in the evening learnt that the climbs are off because of the virus because France wasn’t letting the race to cross the border. So nostalgia is off on Sunday afternoon!

You might of noticed no mention of the mid-week football match where sadly my team forgot to turn up and were lucky to finish in second. Still on to tomorrow-it is the hope that gets you! (surely it has to be a better effort than Tuesday!)

Had a lovely walk today near Haresfield Beacon-wonderful views of the River-a couple of my thousand of pictures above and below!


Stelvio Pass!!!!

I thoroughly enjoyed watching the Giro d’Italia this afternoon as they climbed up the Stelvio Pass all of 2,757 metres with snow all around. It was compelling watching and we were on the edge of our seats! I won’t tell you the result in case you want to watch the highlights! Amazing athletes battling at altitude and have now been riding for nearly three weeks. I will be watching the other race going on at the moment this Sunday (the Vuelta a Espana because it finishes on the Tourmalet but also goes over the Aubisque and the Soulor three climbs the boys and I did three years ago. The road between the Aubisque and the Soulor was especially spectacular and memorable. Even more special  when a kettle of Bearded Vultures (or Lammergeiers)  flew over us. So looking forward to some nostalgia on Sunday. Picture below of a Bearded Vulture-one of these birds spent time in Derbyshire this summer-which must of been a shock to the local birds!


Old Men on Bikes

Out today for a marvellous ride through Cotswold Villages including the great grind up Stouts/Lampern Hill. It was the four Old Groynes trying to get rides in together while we are allowed and on days where the weather looks encouraging (certainly not tomorrow!) The four of us have been on numerous long distance cycling adventures and have become great connoisseurs of cake and coffee/tea stops. We are now getting used to drinking and eating outside!

A Second Blog In A Day!!!

Forgot  to mention something from our journey yesterday. A Buzzard struggled to fly up in front of us as it appeared to have a squirrel in it’s talons. It all looked precarious and as we came underneath the flying bird we braced ourselves in case we were hit by a flying squirrel, we were safe and the bird flew off. It recalled a Story Telling Workshop I was leading with the education staff at the WWT Slimbridge. I had staff recounting travel journeys in pairs. One person recounted a traffic shunt with several vehicles caused by a rabbit being dropped by a Buzzard onto the bonnet of a car and it caused an emergency stop!! You can see why I was anticipating potential danger! It was a great story!