Category Archives: A day in the life

Everyday experience of living with dementia.

In Search of Hope…….

Last weekend I woke to torrential rain and dark skies. It was a disappointing start to the day and initially thought there was no way I’d get a trundle with my camera, but then, after lunch, the clouds started to break, blowing the wind away and the sun shone…..I decided to go out in search of hope…

We all need something to look forward to, to raise our spirits in this often dark time we’re in. For me, I find it in nature and my village as I walk around on my trundles. The sun was desperately trying to fight through the thick clouds

Camera round my neck, I set off, first to the duck pond in case no one had been out with food in the rain; although none of them would starve. But I like to think of them being looked after as they give so much joy to everyone here.

Then up behind the houses and along the back lane. The rain having giving us added mud and many puddles to navigate.

But the shrubs are full of berries, ready made meals for any passing bird who fancies a snack

The first sign of hope was in the middle of the lane, snowdrops just coming into flower. That first sign that spring is round the corner and gives us a reason to look forward……

As I reached Abbys field the sheep the paddock was empty of sheep, but Abby had warned me they had to reside in another field for a while as it was just too muddy in theirs. Another sight to look forward to once the ground recovers……the trees behind sculptured by the weather

My second sign of hope was again along the verge….daffodils piercing the winter soil, their bulbs feeding off the goodness in the ground ready to burst into flower in a month or so time….

Down along the verge I trundled beside the main road, the sun behind me lighting up the road. 

So many villagers had ventured out since the rain ceased, doing just as I was, enjoying the fresh air and all that was around us. All saying hello, some stopping for a chat, others waving from afar, all with warm smiles and warm hearts.

Another sign of hope and the primroses coming into bud

And the winter. Viburnums in full flower

Never forget to look up, look down, look all around as you simply don’t know what missable sights you might miss; gone in a second, captured for ever.

Clouds forming natures own mountains in the sky, now lighter and more friendly than the morning sky.

As I near home, I notice the farmers wife in her front garden with her two ageing dogs, one deaf, one almost blind, but her loving companions. I’d never seen her out before so I stop and we chat away. She’d had a stroke and had not been able to go for walks, so told me my photos kept her in touch with the village 😍……giving her hope that one day she will see it again and be able to go for her own walk……..

But for now she’ll make do with my photos and her two adorable companions….sat happily, waiting for us to finish our conversation….

We all need hope…….sometimes you just have to look at the world more closely……

Right now something as simple as the moon makes my day…….

Before todays blog. Thank you to those who have worried about me not publishing a blog on Mondays and Fridays at the mo. There’s no other reason other than I have little to say. I’d just bore you all with the same trundles as that seems to be all there is at the mo. I’m still talking to other organisations – even had the lovely experience of speaking to a group of people from a Medical Trust in India yesterday – but it’s difficult for me to write a blog about them as the detail has left me as soon as it’s over. I’ve tried recording them and listening to them again, but it lacks the emotion the second time around, so making it difficult to write about.

Hope you all understand ……anyway, now to todays blog…..

Woke up the other morning feeling agitated instead of calm…..only a few days into lockdown and the first thing on my mind is when I should go out for my one allowed trundle of the day. It niggles away at me until I decide. How stupid to let something so irrelevant nag away at me like that. But my trundles are so important to my everyday life. Now we can only have one per day, it’s the biggest decision I have to make each day – when?

Anyway, the other morning I decided to venture out at 10am. I’d decided to leave the duck food on my doormat and pick it up at the end and walk round the village the other way for a change – no going inside needed so no breaking the rules…..🙄

So up the hill and along the Manor House walls and I noticed the moon was having a very long stop up…..

I hadn’t expected to see it this late and probably would have missed it but someone stopped to have a chat and after we’d finished I’d looked around to get my bearings again and saw it gently fading away in the morning blue sky….that one sight suddenly made me smile and feel suddenly happy…..

A roar of an aircraft high in the sky suddenly brought me back to the moment and I followed its trail with my camera……

A couple stopped me along the lane warning me it was icy ahead. The man asked if I was Wendy and I smiled again. “We love your photographs”……a simple random act of kindness kept my spirits high….and as they walked ahead, they turned round again and pointed to more icy paths…….I was a bit like Bambi on ice but I managed to stay upright and moved onto the road….

The village had been much quieter since the lockdown started, fewer cars to worry about. The long lane looked deserted this morning….not even the usual cyclists

The horses in the field a thankful constant….I need consistency…..

As I reached the main road I could see the couple from before were taking the same route as me up the hill

The sun hid behind a cloud allowing a moment to take another piccie….

As I reached the top, I stood and looked over the fields. I always stop here, always love the view, always take the same piccie

Never get tired of it. It’s where I see the sun setting if I’m out so it’s a different view according to the time of day…

I turned my back on the view and ambled along the back lane. More ice underfoot as I shuffle along towards Abbys sheep. I spy a Thrush in the field..don’t see as many thrushes as before, not sure why…

The sheep coming into view and one stood beautifully posed watching me watching her…..

The others were lying beneath the trees or grazing on the grass….

A squirrel hopped about the field and came to rest next to Teddy, but neither battered an eyelid at the others presence. 

I trundle up the long lane a short way, but see the clouds are starting to roll in….and decide to head the other way towards the church..

Another squirrel hopped into view…

Another canine friend to stop and chat to for a few moments….and then I’m alone again on the back lane

No one in the playing fields today and no noise from the village school as I walk past….children all at home, parents back to homeschooling once more….

The skies are really becoming overcast now…will it rain before I’ve finished…..

As I reach the pond I take one photo of the white duck in the reeds

Before crossing over so as not to be seen as I still have to pick up the duck food….but I could hear the frenzied quacking as my stick must have been heard….I didn’t look their way or I’d feel guilty …but I’d be back in a few minutes…..

Nearly home and more smiles, more greetings from those out doing the same as me….so friendly so kind….so needed…..

But as I reach my door step, my trundle isn’t quite finished. My way of fooling myself into thinking I’ve done two walks instead of one…..I pick up the duck food from my doorstep and head to the duck pond the long way round via the ponies, Ginger Biscuit and his friends looking so calm and content..

And then to the duck pond…..the quacking strikes up again and the ducks are happy

And finally I really do head home for a warming cuppa tea……..my ventures out finished until a new day dawns….and no, it didn’t rain until later..

P.S…a few days later my friend Sandra sent me this from the Government website guidance after someone had put it on Twitter…so now I feel that if I become anxious or feel locked in, I can go out a second time without feeling guilty…..

The dark and light side of Covid …….

The first lockdown last year in March, I could focus on the thought of spring around the corner, warmer weather, light evenings, it was hard but seemed easier to cope with. This time we have the winter, sun in short supply, shorter cold days and a feeling of being closed in…..in all honesty I can’t remember what I really thought during the first but do remember how hard it was but also remember feeling hope for the nicer months ahead.

Animals have more freedom than we do at the moment. I know we have no choice if we’re to see the end of this wretched period, but it must be lovely to be in blissful ignorance of the reality that surrounds us right now. All I want is to trundle as and when I please but of course I can’t. I see a beautiful sky outside and just want to venture outside with my camera. Some have said just do it but I would feel so guilty and why should I be allowed to break the rules set for all?

This current lockdown has hit me for 6 again….I’d got into a nice new routine of 2 or 3 walks a day whenever I felt the urge to wander and now I can only have one…Who would have thought that I’d have to think carefully when to trundle? Do I go early if the sun is shining then have to be closed in for the rest of the day. Do I take my chance and hope the sun doesn’t disappear and wait until later? What if I wait too long and the sun disappears and the rain arrives? What petty decisions rule my life now.

This is the worst time of year anyway for a lockdown. Having just put the sparkle of Christmas away for another year, the world suddenly looks grey and gloomy enough without these extra rules that have come into our lives…

Well I decided to type a list of good and bad to help me put things in perspective as there are far more people worse off than me, I really do now that…

The lights and unexpected bonuses provided by Covid

Time to stop and appreciate what you have

Time to trundle 

Time to investigate your neighbourhood

Time to learn new skills

Time to appreciate your community

Time to come together as a community

Time to help others

Time to volunteer

Time to take photos…

The wrongs and dark side

My friend not being allowed to visit your husband in his Care Home for 9 months, then given 10 minutes at his side before he dies……

Living a life limiting condition and not being able to make the most of the time left

My friend having cancer and simply having to sit and wait in hospital instead of having adventures while she can.

Taking away the timings of routine

Reducing some peoples time on this earth

Taking away the time spent with those who mean the most

Taking away out time to travel

Preventing us from using our time to live your life the way you want

Preventing the 20 second daily hug we all so badly need…

Covid has given and taken away TIME in so many different ways. Who would have thought one virus could change time in so many ways….I do try and see the positives and like them to outweigh the negatives, but occasionally, the dark side comes out winning, especially on rubbish weather days when my camera has to stay safely inside…

A cold misty trundle …….

The other day dawned to more fog and cold…..but by mid morning, I could sense the sun was desparate to shine and burn off the mist. So I set off for a trundle. I decided to go along the never ending lane that leads to Risby lake but today I’d just be going halfway…

As I stepped outside there was a distinct chilly breeze wrapping it’s icy grip around my face. Up the hill towards Abby’s field I stopped to take a photo of the mist in the distance but the sun was definitely trying to shine

Two other villagers had already turned into the never ending lane, also out for their morning walk and wrapped up snug, their dark figures bobbing up and down between the trees

As I turned into the lane a Robin stopped and posed for me in the hedge, following me a while, skipping along the hedge from one branch to another…

The two walkers ahead of me had vanished into the distant mist, much quicker than me…but then I was in no hurry

Seagulls had come in land and were soaring high, flying in circles looking for a landing place that might provide food in one of the fields

The low clouds rolled across the sky forcing the sun to impersonate the moon

It was so peaceful, no other humans to be seen, just nature and me in harmony as I continued along the winding track, past the farm house with the ancient tractor, so lovingly cared for that it still does its job.

Eventually I could see the two women coming back towards me in the distance. They’d probably been to the lake and back in the time it had taken me to get here

But that didn’t matter, it had been a lovely trundle. A few more steps brought me to the end where I could see my final destination, the next remote farm along the lane, it’s picket gate signalling it’s existence hidden to the right

Turning round I retraced my steps. The seagulls had decided on their resting place

And I trundled back down the never ending lane towards home and a warming cuppa tea…..the sun beating the cloud for a moment and allowing my shadow to appear…

How many miles have I trundled since this strange world began…..?

So many new words and phrases have entered our world since Covid began…..and I’ve never trundled so much, not because I havn’t wanted to, I simply havn’t had the luxury of spare time….until now – an unexpected bonus…

After the initial trauma that lockdown brought, of the change in routine, of not knowing what to do, how to organise my days, I began to use walking as part of a set routine to give structure to my day. But I needed something more; I needed a purpose for my trundles and that’s where my camera came into being, it gave me a reason to trundle, to capture what I saw….

I did wonder what on earth I could find different from one day to the next, taking the same routes around the village. However, I soon realised that you never know what you will see each day.

Each day I’d different even if the route is the same. The sky is different, the weather different, the light different. No two days are the same, the beauty of nature is that it gifts us surprises each and every day….don’t worry the wood pigeon got away….

One day, when I just didn’t want to stay inside, I clocked up 20,000 steps, around 10 miles in real money and it got me thinking just how far I’d walked since lock down has started back in March 2020. I like to do at least 10,000 steps per day and love the buzzing sound my Fitbit makes on my wrist when the amount is reached. I’m not saying I do that as a minimum each and every day. Some days my head just needs to remain inside, it’s safer there and some days my body and brain just tell me one short walk is enough. But on most days I do either a long walk or 2 or 3 short walks simply to be outside in the fresh air.

I know I’m lucky, I live in a beautiful place and hadn’t realised just how beautiful until lockdown came so I never get bored with the same walks and of course I have my feathered friends to feed

and the weather creates a different walk each time

But just how far have my legs taken me in this last 10 months?

Well luckily my Fitbit records and keeps all the data and I added each weeks steps from 1st March 2020 to the 3rd Jan 2021….I was staggered…I was so staggered I redid it……

2,621,600 steps 😳…….converted to miles it is roughly 1146.61miles 😳😳😳……..

That’s on average 26 miles per week, a marathon per week but then per day comes down to 3.7 miles which on average is about right…..so it shows how little per day you have to do to clock up the miles and have a surprise around every corner…

According to my dear friend google, it’s around 150 miles to Keswick from here so I could have walked to Paradise and back about 4 times….😂😂 imagine 😍 and if only

Walking not only is good for you, it gets you outside, you meet people and animals  along the way and if you take your camera, you collect wonderful memories…….

A short drive to the Humber…

On New Years Eve, I felt the need to see the sea, but knew that probably wasn’t possible. I’m lost as to what the rules are, what I can and can’t do, so when Sarah asked if I wanted to do anything, I asked if we could go to the Humber Bridge. How I long for the return of the days when I can trundle past on a train. Seems like years ago, although it’s only months.

Anyway, it was a lovely sunny winters day and we hopped into the car for the short drive to the Humber. I know it’s not the sea, but the vast expanse of the water along with the magnificent bridge would do for now…

As we reached the car park, we could see other families had had the same idea, but there’s lots of space for people to avoid each other. While I was waiting for Sarah to put on her walking shoes, I stood by the large black mill, recently painted and started my snapping…

The sun made the Humber sparkle

I’d said to Sarah, how I wanted a piccie of me holding up the Humber 😂🙄…so we crunched our way along the gravel towards the middle of the bridge. My arms held aloft, Sarah shouted instructions as to which way to move my arms…..they were beginning to ache and protest but me thinks we got it….😂

Looking away from the bridge there was Brough in the distance. Another place I missed as the tea hut was always a place I headed for when catching the train there

There’s usually lots of bird life but Sarah reminded me how last time there hadn’t been any. However, on our way back Sarah spotted some on the shoreline in the distance. We headed further along and I could zoom in and caught the flock of seagulls

Amongst them I suddenly spotted a sole long beak…..I zoomed in closer and there was a solitary long billed Curlew alongside the seagulls..

Such amazingly long beaks all the more able to sink into the sand and find it’s food….

Such a simple thing had made my day and made the short drive even more worthwhile…

My body was telling me it had had enough of the cold and stiff breeze so we headed back to the car, but not before one last look at one of my favourite local views…..

The first real frost of winter…

Between Christmas and New Year, the village had it’s first real frost of winter and a sprinkling of snow.   Snow doesn’t appear as readily as years ago and I remember villagers at the bus stop telling me the tale of when my road and the whole village were snowed in.

Local tractors came to the aid of those needing help and the village was just one white world. But it was spoken about with fondness of memories where the villagers came together again to help each other survive…….

So the appearance of a frost sounds quite pathetic in comparison really, but it made for a different trundle.

When it’s icy my daughters often call me ‘Bambi on ice’….as I gingerly try to keep upright..it was misty as well which added to the magical landscape….

I stepped out of my door and immediately started to slide down my path😳….turning round, I went back in and got my tub of salt crystals and scattered them along the path and threw a few down the road for good measure….

Back on track I stepped cautiously down the road, icy patches here and there to be avoided..I decided to go along the main road first towards the duck pond with a veil of mist hanging over it.

Then decided to cross the road before the disappointed ducks realised I’d come without food, but the 3 amigos gave me a beady eye as I walked on passed…

Up through the houses to the back lane and as I turned the corner a blackbird and Robin stood as still as me just watching

The playing fields would remain silent of games today, for and frost changing the landscape

Something as simple as a nettle leaf, avoided at all other times but takes on a beauty of it own when covered in frost

The lane lay empty of companionship, just the mist revealing section by section as I trundled further

A pheasant in the horses field, oblivious to my presence rummaged for food

Before it saw me and took flight, it’s signature squawk echoing in the cold air

As I approached the graveyard I could hear morning chatter and smiles greeted me as I appeared. Dog walkers passing the time of day warned me not to venture further up the back lane as it was a sheet of black ice this morning, so, after a chat and a cuddle with the dogs,  I turned right past the church and towards the Shetland ponies. 

Suddenly I heard 2 voices behind me calling my name. It was Val and her hubby who own the ponies carrying bucketfuls of treats. Someone had had a go at them for not providing a shelter for these little ponies, but as we said the clue is in the name ‘Shetland Ponies’. Their habitat is outside in all weathers. When Val provided a shelter some years ago, they didn’t use it. Anyway I’m sure she educated the person…..

Before Val came into view Ginger Biscuit looked content in their frosty field and knew that Val wouldn’t be the only one bringing him carrots and other treats….

The ponies all headed for Val at the sound of her voice and the pheasant decided to go into hiding for a while in the full knowledge that when the humans had gone, it could surface again and sample whatever delights had been left

As for me, well I headed home for a warming cuppa tea……

From Sunrise to Sunset…..

If I couldn’t trundle, couldn’t take my camera and snap away, I’d be totally lost right now. But I can and it’s been my life saver, my new routine, my way of coping since the words  ‘Covid’ and ‘lockdown’ entered our vocabulary.

One morning I woke pondering the thought of an early morning walk, undecided whether my body could make the effort….whenever I feel like this I shuffle into my back bedroom, my dressing gown hugged close, and simply look out of the window. It’s here I can see the start of night changing to day and the prospect of what might be to come. In the right hand corner of my view I could see the sky starting to light up…..it might just be a beautiful sunrise…that swayed my decision.

In the time it had taken to shower, get dressed, pick up my camera and headed downstairs, the glow of a sunset filled the air. Coat and gloves on, I turned the key and headed out into the cold dark morning air…as soon as I reached the corner, here was my first view…the Dog and Duck pub having been closed for so long due to Covid restrictions. Two of our 3 lovely pubs currently surviving, one having lost it’s battle to remain in business in the autumn….😔

The sky all around turning a glorious sunset reddy pink….as I crossed the road up towards the church, this side of the village was bathed in a sunset glow. No lights showed in the houses and I wanted to shout to everyone to come and see, wake up and see what you’re missing! But me thinks that might not have gone down very well 😂

The church yard lay silent, its residents the keepers of so many memories.

Along the back lane I trundled through the mud, heavy rain having fallen in the night and left a cascade of misplaced gravel and mud. The skeletons of trees and twigs outlined against the glow

I could feel time was running out  so I quickened my hobble to reach the playing fields 

Then along the snicket where I could finally catch sight of the rising sun

I stood and watched a while, the sunset fading with each breathe I took before heading home for my morning cuppa…the ducks quacking as they heard my stick approach. But I knew Simon and Peter the Duck man would be along shortly with their first feeds of the day….I’ll go later…

So lunchtime arrived and off I went for my second trundle…the ducks first, able to snap one simply chilling before they saw my arrival

Then another let out an enormous quack, signalling to the others that food was imminent

As soon as I threw the seed into the air the chaos began

Playtime at the duck pond in full swing

Until all my seed was gone and I stood at the edge watching them ducking and diving for the last remnants…

Empty bag in my pocked, I shuffled up towards the church lane, passing by the Shetland pony field. They seemed to have acquired a new resident, there most days now…

Turning into the back lane, Wally posing his cutest pose

I turned left down the never ending lane, knowing I’d only go halfway today

Before retracing my steps, my shadow my constant companion

And time for my next cuppa tea……

My final trundle of the day was hoping to see the sunset. Back along the lane and a squirrel caught my eye in the sheep’s field, digging up long buried nuts..

Carrying straight on to the sunset vantage point, a Robin hopped along the hedge beside me before settling down on a wooden sign

A few feet along another, or was it the same one, hopped on to a nearby branch

As I came to the top of the lane, the sunset was at work, the windmills on the horizon bathed in the different light of the sunset. More an orangey glow at sunset..

 Reaching the bottom of the road, crossing over to climb once more and another wonderful viewpoint

Almost at the horses paddock and a gap allows me silhouette the branches against the burning sky

Finally heading home before it got too dark….

One last photo of the day, but that entailed standing in my back garden and capturing the last beauty of the day, the moon, low in the sky so branches lit up in front of it….

From sunrise to sunset in my village……My Fitbit told me I’d done over 20,000 steps that day and my legs told me the same, but oh what a lovely day of trundles I’d had……..how lucky am I…?

Time for a Shuddle…….

Well 2020 is behind us thank goodness. Let’s hope 2021 is a kinder year for us all.

I’ve still be writing my blogs over the Christmas period, just not publishing them. If you’ve read my book, you’ll know the tragedy that nearly occurred when I stopped typing over the Christmas break a few years ago, so I’ve never stopped typing since. Anyway some of the first blogs will be about the trundles I had over the last couple of weeks……..this is the first….enjoy…

Just before Christmas and when all my pre Christmas blogs were written, I had a lovely message from one of the villagers, Abby. She owns the little family of sheep who I’m always taking photos of when I pass their field because they’re so adorable, each one with their own particular character. Some of their wool had been sent to Philly Hare in the Western Isles last year; little did they know how well travelled they were….and by pure chance Philly launched her own Etsy shop yesterday of her wonderful felting craft – you can see her works of art here:

https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/FullMoonFelting?ref=seller-platform-mcnav

Who knows maybe some of my lovely sheep helped inspire these! And Philly took me to many of the places on the photos when I was lucky enough to visit her…..

Anyway, back down to here….. Abby invited me into their field to sit with them and have a ‘shuddle’ – a cuddle with all her friendly sheep. To say I was excited was an understatement. There’s 8 I think, some of whom were tiny lambs last year, but now fully grown with characters all of their own.

Lots of rain had fallen lately so I knew it would definitely be a Wellie trundle. 

When hugs are sadly missing as they are now it’s just nice to simply touch animals. Billy the cat gets smothered in cuddles but now this would be something different. The only people I get hugs from are Gemma and Stuart and I always hold tight for those few seconds more, such is life devoid of contact at the mo, so when I’m there I’m reluctant to let go…..

Anyway, now I would be having a shuddle with the sheep instead. I really didn’t know how friendly they’d be, after all I was the whacky lady who often stood at the opposite side of their fence taking photos…..

I ventured up the hill and through the small gate. Abby wasn’t around so I simply stood and watched them. All of a sudden a cheery voice came from the side of the house and the sheep all chorused a welcoming ‘baaaa’.

I stood as they fled this stranger in their field but as Abby emptied their veggies into their troughs they all decided to ignore said stranger and come and see what treats they’d been given 😂…as they munched away, Abby said the first to arrive for a cuddle would be Teddy followed by Wally. Wally approached me and I sunk my gloved hand into his thick coat, carrot still in his mouth

As Wally stood there allowing me a shuddle, Valley came across to see what Wally had left for her

The others stood a little way away, sizing me up

I then sat on the log and was in heaven. The sheep adore their lovely owner and all came to crowd round, each one wanting their own piece of Abby 

but since there was me as well, they huddled round this extra pair of hands willing to give these friendly sheep a cuddle. I seemed to have scored a hit with the adorable Wally

His horns showing the scars of a recent squabble with Valley. His eyes almost hidden from view by the thick soft coat of wool appearing every so often as he cocked his head to one side

They clearly adored Abby and nudged and shuffled around to get her attention. Teddy on the left always gets grumpy if she lets go of him so the others fight for her remaining hand

The twins behind were lambs in the flock last year and were a bit wary to come too close,so stood behind simply watching

Eventually one came within touching distance, had a little shuddle then retreated. 

I’m not sure how long I sat there, just enjoying their contact, their presence, their funny little characters, but I eventually got up off the log, my wellies having sunk into the mud. It was hard to stop my feet coming out of them 😂…..

I said my goodbyes, her little boys and hubby now in the yard with their new puppy and I went back through the little gate and ventured home, but not before one last look. Moments before I’d sat on the log, now it looked as though I’d never been there as they all settled back down to simply being in the field behind the fence

Take a last Pre Christmas trundle with me…….

After all the excitement of the Scarecrow trail Sunday would be a much gentler day to enjoy. No rushing about hiding pebbles, I would just be able to enjoy the promised sunshine. The scarecrows would still be there for their final day so hopefully more big and little people would be out trundling too….

The day dawned clear and bright, showing the promise of a nice day ahead…

I did think of going for an early morning walk, but thought I’d wait until daylight for my first of the day. As I sat having a cuppa watching the morning birds come and see what was on offer for breakfast, my Robin waited in the queue patiently waiting

My first trundle was around 10am. It had a purpose as the couple I bought my house from still live in the village and I often get the odd Christmas card for them. So I headed towards their house, passing the house with the Chinese lanterns still trying to outwit winter

Back along the lane, saying good morning to the horses 

And the morning sun beginning to light up my path

Wally the sheep posed beautifully 

So many families out once more taking in the final day of the Scarecrow trail. Many today with maps and scoresheets, children racing round from one to the other getting lots of exercise as they are so well spread out….

The church looked lovely bathed in sunlight

And remaining seed heads from the summer held a beauty all of their own

Along to the duck pond, stopping every now and then for a chatter and hello, the ducks waiting hopefully for their next feed…..unaware of my arrival

As I threw the seed into the air for the first arrivals, those at the other end of the pond raced to be in on the act

And suddenly it was playtime at the duck pond

Back home for a cuppa, watched a couple of Christmas programmes on my ipad…..but the sun kept shining and looked so enticing for a mid afternoon trundle and hopefully a sighting of Saturn and Jupiter. All the reports said 4.30 pm was about the best time, so maybe I’d catch the sun setting too.

I could feel the air getting cooler as I stepped outside, the light staring to fade already

but I had that feeling of a special sunrise in store. I headed towards Gemma and Stuarts for a cuppa and a chat before heading back outside into the now decidedly cool yet clear air.

More people to smile and chat to on my way, also making the most of the dry weather. I turned the corner at the end of the road, stopped and smiled at the view

I hadn’t been disappointed, the sunset was glorious. I perched on the street sign and simply stared in awe at the beauty nature offers if we just take the time to watch it at work

I turned to my left and there was the moon shining bright in the sky

What could be more perfect on a still clear cold winters day? My body telling me I must move, brought me out of my thoughts and I wondered up the lane, an aeroplane soaring through the dark sky

The horses in the field now shadows in the distance yet here is a lovely viewpoint for the sunset too

It was just a tad too early to find the colliding Saturn and Jupiter, so I walked down the never ending lane accompanied by Tia the dog and her owner Liz. We chatted amiably as Tia investigated hedgerows and puddles left from the overnight rain…I ventured a little further as Tia turned round for home and was greeted by a swooping white owl, surprised by my appearance so too quick for me to snap. I stood still watching for a moment, hoping it would reveal itself once more but it was probably watching me watching it and refused to make itself known..

So I too turned around retracing my steps, one last photo of the fading sunset

If I was going to see the planets at all it would be about now, so I trundled back down to the corner, clouds annoyingly drifting across the sky. I searched the sky for the bright lights in the sky and had almost given up, when a twinkling caught my eye. I zoomed in with my camera, my cold shakes hands refusing to keep still for long enough but I could tell it was them. I must have clicked 20 or 30 times, hoping to get just one shot….and I did….just….

I could get far closer but just couldn’t keep still enough to get the perfect shot, but at least I got one further away at least showing the closeness of the two planets…..

My hands aching, my head buzzing from the excitement and concentration, it was time to turn my back and head home…….another beautiful day from start to finish…..