Sunday, 2 July 2017

Saturday July 1st 2017

Sometimes, when I come to write a blog, it is at the end of a long, tiring day. Maybe I had a bad day at work, or my arm is giving me gip so I can't sleep. And so when I come to write, I'm not inspired, and my words just seem to be a list; did this, then this, then that. And so on.

Last week was such a week, so much to be thankful for, and be happy about. And yet, I was in a bad mood, could not concentrate, could not sleep. Urgh. So bad was it, Jools noticed and wondered if it was something she had said. It wasn't. Nothing any you have done either, just felt like crap, and was easily distracted got angry with myself for it. So, from tomorrow, a working from home day means just one computer on at a time, and between 8 and four, just the work one; crack on, get some work done and be productive.

So, I hope to work better and blog better. Onwards and upwards as they said in lift operator school.

As Jools had done most of the shopping, we were again spared Tesco on Saturday morning, which really isn't that bad, as it is mostly empty, and contrary to all outward appearances, I quite like to shop, its just dealing with other people sometimes I have trouble with.

One hundred and seventy nine Anyway, Up at the crack of half past six and the usual stuff in the morning, ending with coffee and croissants while we ponder what to do with the day. Turns out Jools wanted a tripod, and wanted to look at them in person like, which meant going to Canterbury to Canterbury Cameras. And as we were behind the usual schedule, we leave home on the crack of ten to drive the 20 minutes into the city, which would already be filling up. On the plus side, the camera shop is outside the city walls and on the road from Dover into town, so we could go in, shop and get out quick.

Violet Helleborine Epipactis purpurata The camera shop was full of lovely things, but the subject of most talk once Jools had selected her tripod was the new ^d, which I hope to buy in the near future. What is it like, the spec and so on. But still is a two grand camera, and seems a lot. Next door is the high end hifi shop, and I went in the re to look for speakers. Speakers can cost a lot I found, some pairs come in at five grand. I'm sure you could pay more.

Violet Helleborine Epipactis purpurata On balance, if I were to spend two grand on something, it would be a camera. And would have to be on 0% credit too. But I know I would use it. But we leave town with me dreaming of a new camera, and Jools playing with her new tripod, in the car. As you do.

Not much planned for the day, as the weather was supposed to only get out late in the afternoon, which made the bright sunshine we were seeing a bit unexpected to say the least. But welcome.

My only plan for the day was to go to Barham to check on the Violet Helleborines, and to go for a walk too. I mean, I do enjoy the walks, but walks where you see orchids are even better. I'm sure I'd enjoy a bike ride too, but a bike ride with orchids at the end would be spiffing.

Violet Helleborine Epipactis purpurata We park in the usual place but instead of walking up the bridleway or into the beech wood, we take the footpath opposite, skirting the edge of the wood, up the gentle hill until, if you look carefully, there are a group of purple coloured stems and spikes unfurling; the Violets. And much further advanced than I dared hoped. Maybe a week away from being open. I take their shot from all angles, using my tripod which I had lugged along, and then we searched around for more spikes, in the end finding two more, but failing to find the one back down the hill beside the track. It might be seen next time we go.

And this time with passion I walk back to the car over the hill and through the remains of the orchid wood, still scarred by the logging that had been done, and only a handful of spikes had been able to flower and go to seed. I hope it will be better next year, but it looks grim for now. I was also looking for the holy grail of orchids; The Ghost. It has never been recorded in Kent, and so was a wild goose chase, but if one were to find a spike, national fame would follow very quickly. The Ghost has not been seen in Britain since the 1980s, and may not be seen again, but then as its single spike is small, lasts a day, they could be in the heart of a wood for years and no one would know.

No hover fly I meet Jools back at the car, and with her having been asked to do a favour for Bob over the road ( more of this in a minute) we decided to have lunch out, and with the sun beating down we thought it best to sit in the beer garden, which is what we do when we get to the black Robin, and I find there is a beer festival on too! We both have fish and chips, I sup a pint or two of Gadds Cloudy IPA to wash it down. It is high summer indeed, the place gets busier as we wait for our food, more and more people coming for either or lunch or the festival.

And that was that, Jools had to be out later, going to Lydd to board an aircraft on a photographic flight along the coast. We were approached by Bob about doing the flight for hi, as he is ill and could not manage it. So, as ten years back I took shots as Jols did a flying lesson, I offered her the chance to take the pictures this time. Only I failed to pick up the signals that she wasn't keen. but me being male failed to read them. Anyway, at three she set off for the hour drive to Lydd, and I stayed behind, to write, listen to the radio and edit shots. Also, work in the garden; do some watering, pruning and so on. Sadly for Jools, the clouds rolled in just before the flight took off, meaning her shots didn't come out too well, but with some editing, they were acceptable.

Meanwhile, back home I flick through the TV channels and find the Tour de France on; stage 1 time trial, but I watch it, finding it interesting, especially in the driving rain making each turn dangerous.

Jools gets home at just gone eight, meaning late for dinner, but as we were hungry again. She talked me through the flight as we looked through the shots, deciding which ones could be salvaged.

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