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Modern technology

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  A highlight this week has been going to Lancashire. We set off early in the morning mist. We were going to a Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust centre. Not too sure how to get there we used the Satnav – well I always do. You can’t go wrong, but somehow, we did, and we missed the turning and had to double back. No great problem though and we were soon nearby. The road names gave us a clue Robin Road and Curlew Lane. I could hear the call of geese and soon saw flocks in the low-lying fields. The trees were wet-land trees – alder and willow. I had bought our tickets online, so we were able to get through to the centre without any fear of contact. It was still misty and there, looming above on a plinth, was a bust of Peter Scott. I am always taken by surprise by these busts, not by Peter Scott who founded the organisation, but he looked slightly strange as there was only the top part of him floating there. A bit like at the Proms where the founder Henry Wood ‘sits’ above the orchestra as a br

It's Not A Boy! Chapter 16, To Tell the Truth - Part 1

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A lie and a sixpence lead to troubling times

Patterns in the sky

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Have you noticed the shapes of winter trees recently? Their dark twigs and branches are standing out against the Shropshire skyline in the clear winter days. I can see lots of trees from my windows, and I look, as Oscar Wilde wrote, at that ‘tent of blue’ patterned by trees. We have all to a greater or lesser extent become prisoners in our homes. So, every window is important to me with its view of trees against the blue sky. My mother loved trees without their leaves. I did not ask her why; we never do ask our parents enough and we always wish we had found out more. But I am beginning to understand now. She was an embroiderer and often used twig shapes in her work. We lived on a farm so each morning she got up early to help with milking the cows. The whole time before ‘dinner’ (at midday) was taken up with farm work. Then, after the meal was cleared and pots washed, she got changed and began her intricate patterned embroidery. When I was a schoolgirl, I knew all the trees in our f

It's Not A Boy! Chapter 15, The Picnic - Part 3

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Danger on our farm my little cousin has an accident.

Is there hope?

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  It’s all well and truly over. The dream for a good time has been and gone. This year, unlike last year, we did go in the loft and retrieve our Christmas decorations box and we strung a few lights on the walls. And the cards were hung on ribbons on the ceiling in their usual place. I can let you into a secret and that is that the card ribbons stay there all year hidden amongst the beams. No one seems to notice, and it is much easier leaving them there, but I do feel it is a bit lazy. And I feel lazy about using the recycling box to decide about what to do with all the bits and pieces like wrapping paper, empty boxes and a gift of teas that we do not like. I feel virtuous, though, about doing recycling and it stops me storing things away to clutter up the drawers and shelves. The hen and the compost bin deal with leftover food. It feels good putting spare cabbage leaves on the compost and giving the hen and wild birds a treat of spare mashed potato. Perhaps, more seriously, COVID i

Robin on my Teacup, Country Calendar - January Part 1 - The wayward waxwing

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Look out for the waxwings this winter. Here it is visiting us.