Monday, 8 November 2010

Key Ringed

Another stormy night but this time with a biting easterly. Snow on the tops this morning.

I was outside all day yesterday attempting some minor house maintenance. It's amazing how much longer even the simplest jobs take with a freezing cold wind blowing. I don't know how much snot ended up mixed with my paint. I'm sure it won't do any harm.

We've had some interesting bird activity: Ringed Plovers beetling about on the shore and a Sparrowhawk on the gatepost. The Plovers are funny (and a little tricky) to watch. My wife handed me the binoculars and pointed to a muddy-sand-shingle area of the shore where she had been observing three or four of the little birds. Even with the binoculars and looking at the correct area it took me fully five minutes to spot them. They tend to stay still for long periods, then suddenly "scuttle" across the shore en-masse.

The Sparrowhawk visited about a week ago. We have never seen any kind of raptor close to the house, so this was a bit of a treat. They're quite 'delicate' and much smaller than I had imagined. I managed to get a somewhat blurry shot of it through the window glass before it swooped away.

After my bone-freezing and mucus-streaked endeavours outside yesterday I was glad of an invite to dinner at my mother's house. The dessert was a rather toothsome key lime pie, made with zingy lime juice recently imported from Florida by a family member. There was some discussion about where the "key" bit of the name came from (I think we all knew in reality): was it a pie with keys hidden inside, somewhat like the sixpence in a Christmas pudding? There was much juvenile hilarity at my brother's suggestion that that would be more akin to a "Yale log".

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