Tag Archives: birds of prey

Just Look 3

Oh no! He’s off on one again! Don’t deny it. That’s what you’re thinking but I just had to write this. I could not believe what just happened.

A lot of stuff I see when walking the dog or indeed, just on a normal day-to-day basis, tend to small things. Plants in flower at the wrong time of year, little critters scampering around in the undergrowth, birds catching prey in the distance, so I understand to an extent that other people may not notice. They may well see things I don’t and I’m fine with that. However, today was different.

Once again, despite the rain, the wind and the chill I was walking Dexter out in the boonies. We bumped into a bloke we see from time to time also walking his dog and we walked together for a while. Typically, this bloke was on his phone sending emails I think and he was totally wrapped up in it. No conversation, no looking about, so I get bored and Dexter and I eventually go off in a different direction. While we still all walking along together, I noticed something about 200 yards in front of us just as we came out of some woods into a field. I didn’t say anything because I was curious to see how long it would take this bloke to notice. We got closer and closer and still no reaction from my fellow dog walker as he emailed all kinds of unknown stuff to all kinds of unknown places. It amazes me we get 4G in the middle of nowhere! Dexter woofed at the thing in front of us. The other dog also woofed at it. No reaction. Eventually, we squeezed past this thing and STILL he didn’t notice! I was astounded. A few yards further on I said my farewells and strode off in a different direction. It wasn’t a thing of beauty he missed, it wasn’t a small plant in flower or any kind of wildlife nor was it unusual except that it didn’t belong. I went back later and took a photograph. I think this bloke will soon become a statistic. You’ll see what I mean a bit further down.

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How can you NOT see this!

If I ever get to the stage where I don’t notice stuff, any stuff, I want my children to take me to the cliffs at Beachy Head and set me off walking towards the edge!

By the way, the beard’s coming along just fine.

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Have a smashing day. Open your eyes and take some time to look around.

More Dick soon

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Just Look 2

This is a subject I will no doubt return to again and again. I do get a bee in my bonnet about this.

Earlier today I took Dexter for walkies out to the fields and woods near where we live. He has the time of his life sniffing around, digging holes, chasing sticks and every now and again chasing rabbits. I also take advantage of this hour or so to recharge my batteries, contemplate my navel and just generally chill out. I admit I take my phone with me but that’s just because it’s not unknown for Dexter to knock me over in his pursuit of a sniff and I take it with me “just in case”. While we were out we bumped into a woman we see from time to time when she walks her dog Dolce. As a change she decided to join us on our route as she normally walks her dog up to Castle hill and beyond while we tend to walk out into the fields and woods. Strangely, the mobile signal is far better out in the middle of nowhere than it is where I live and the woman I was walking with decided to take full advantage of this. (She shall remain nameless). She spent a large portion of our walk sending and replying to emails, she sent a few texts, made three work related phone calls and as far as I could tell was totally oblivious to everything around her. Our conversation was non-existent and I admit to getting a bit pissed off so Dexter and I made our excuses and headed off.

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Harebell in flower months before it should be

During that period she didn’t notice a thing around her whereas I’d seen a number of things that had caught my eye because they were unusual. For a lot of people this is likely to be indescribably boring but I noted a number of plants in flower which when you consider it’s only February is remarkable in itself as these plants are not due to come into flower until April or later, there was a pheasant hiding in the undergrowth, a kestrel swooped on something in the fields and flew off with it. Dexter disturbed a field mouse which scrambled away under the ivy. There was all kinds of stuff going on and this woman just didn’t realise.

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Wild primroses in flower in February

Why do people do this? It’s saturday, you’re walking your dog in some pretty amazing countryside and you spend all your time on the phone! What a total waste of some valuable down time. I know that many people lead busy lives but to my mind that is even more reason to take any opportunity to relax.

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Look closely and you will see what I saw

I said this last time I wrote about this and I’ll keep on saying it. Give yourself a break. It’s all very well thinking you are constantly in touch but in reality you have lost touch. You have lost touch with whats going on around you and narrowing your focus like that effects all aspects of your life so for goodness sake when the chance to take a breather comes along, take it.

Enough of this for now.

Have a smashing day (turn your phone off)

More Dick soon

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Just look

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I think this is a Bee Orchid. I spotted this one in a nearby hedgerow

In my last post I mentioned that things are there to be seen if only you looked. My family and I are lucky enough to live on the Downs and if we walk for just a few minutes we are deep in the countryside surrounded by fields, woods and hedgerows. The new header image on my blogs front page is a photo I took on my Samsung phone a few weeks ago just a short stroll from our home. Walking the dog gives us all an opportunity to walk around in some really beautiful countryside and it’s quite surprising what you can see and find if you look. I remember seeing an advertisement for an online shopping site in a glossy magazine recently. The picture in the ad was of a woman walking her dog in a park and it read along the lines of “Look what I found while walking the dog”. It was a wardrobe! I remember thinking why on earth would you shop on-line while walking the dog? I know it was only a magazine ad but ads and ad men tend to reflect society as it is. For goodness sake, if you’re walking the dog, use it as a way to escape from the endless requirement to be in the loop. Instead, take the chance to actually look at your surroundings, to see what’s there just waiting to be discovered. It doesn’t matter if you live in town, there is still plenty to see and enjoy in the parks that most people can get to. Where I live if you look, you can find some pretty rare orchids (and some pretty common ones too).

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Another wild orchid I saw while walking Dexter

 

There are badgers, foxes, pesky wabbits, hedgehogs, mice, kestrels, sparrow hawks, pheasants, owls and no end of small birds all over the place. If you take the trouble to look you will see them. I recently found out that it’s possible to find black truffles around here.  Haven”t found any yet but no harm in trying is there? Of course, it’s not just the flora and fauna that’s there to be enjoyed. Just looking at the view is a pleasant way to spend a moment or two. Even municipal parks have some fantastic vistas with magnificent trees, flower beds and undulating grassy areas. I was in Battersea Park recently in south-west London and it was awesome. The River Thames flowed along one side, there were hundreds of mature trees, shrubbery and grass. People were jogging, riding bikes, walking dogs and just strolling along. Most of the walkers were on their phones though. What a disappointing way to spend your time when you’re in such a wonderful setting.

Woodland close to where we live

Do yourself a favour next time you go out for a stroll, leave your phone at home. Take the chance to have a look at whats around you. Even if all you do is walk down the road to the shops you will be surprised at what you can see. Give yourself a break.

Sermon over. Have a fantastic day.

More Dick soon.

Dick