Thursday 19 April 2012
An evening walk
I've just burned 225 calories by walking quickly for an hour. Not so quickly, I might add, that I couldn't enjoy the birds, the wild flowers or the views. Every now and then I stopped to appreciate all three.
I walked up the valley towards Jim's, but at the junction I climbed the steep hill a little way, just so I could lean against the gate and take in the valley view. The sun hadn't quite stooped behind the western hills yet, so everything was bathed in a soft golden glow. The first Swallow had reached our valley and skimmed low over the pasture, shape-mimicking the Red Kite which prowled the skies above him, lazily leaning on a wing to change direction. Across the valley, Penrhiwmeredith's ewes were gargling bleats at their lambs, encouraging them to come and follow them on their grazing wander across the field. The hedgerows were littered with Primroses, Dog's Mercury, Celendines with their faces closing up for the night, the occasional Red Campion, Stitchwort, ragged button-like leaves of Shining Cranesbill with its tiny pink flower, banks of Violets, the first flowers on the Ramsons and arching new growth of brambles.
Another Red Kite flew down and settled on a field which had just been spread with slurry, intending to look for worms for a pre-bedtime snack, but the Crows had his number and one dropped out of a nearby oak tree and mobbed him, so that the Kite moved further down the valley.
Every hundred yards or so a fresh pair of Chiff-Chaffs called to each other, a Robin sang, Blackbirds flew up into the hedgerow and Sparrows dropped down a spray of two of Brambles to reach cover as I passed.
As I walked up our steep hill, I upset the entire Blackbird population and they were yammering away with warning calls that a human was coming. Gosh, now I know where all the 26 who come to our garden in bad weather live.