Monday 12 March 2012



We were walking back from the Coronation Tap in Clifton, where we'd been experimenting with cider. In the light afternoon breeze, cherry blossom drifted down into the road, and a burst of song came from a hawthorn. 

"Listen!" I said.

"It's a bird," said Andrew.

 "It's a Blackcap," I said. "A migrant. One of those songs of spring."

"We only get Kookaburras and Galahs," he  said. He does live in Fremantle, which might explain it.

Spring is indeed coming on apace, though I've yet to see a swallow.  For now, here's one flying over Barbaryball, where I stayed last year at blackthorn blossom time. Two challenges in this picture- capturing the contrast between the patches of sunlight and the cloud shadows, and portraying trees when they are still not fully in leaf. It was fun to do, and I tried not to feel entirely outclassed when we looked at the Ravilious pictures in the RWA. Even though they were really brilliant. 


  1. I felt a real sense of elation when seeing this. There is something so uplifting. Beautiful work.

  2. Great to see you both on Friday, Dru - glad you enjoyed the exhibition.

    Lovely swallow!

  3. And cockatoos. Not what you'd call pretty birdsong.

  4. "Experimenting with cider" ? :)

  5. Not quite, Anji- just looked at the Portland observatory web page, and no swallows yet mentioned... can't be long, though!

    Thank you, Bella!

    Sorry we couldn't stay longer, James- can't stand crowds. Even though it was good that there was a crowd.

    It was cockatoos you said, not galahs, then, Andrew? Damn, I wasn't sure. O well. Do you get galahs?

    Yes, Jenny. We had to see if it tasted nice. So we experimented with the Thatchers, the Thatchers Dry, and the Addlestones. The resuls were inconclusive, so we shall have to repeat the experiment.