Hope, joy, wonder, grace, tranquility and others.

If the weather stays fine tomorrow, I’m taking my lunch down by the river. Only 10 yards from Widdybank Farm, it’s a hop and a jump to the gurgling waters of the river Tees. I was fortunate last week to see a black grouse… no, two black grouse! I also saw my first curlew, several snipe and skylarks. Our own garden is also a hive of activity. Since our hens arrived (two), blossom has decorated the cherry tree and the feeders are buzzing with finch. The great tit is also a common visitor; I could watch them all day (but that wouldn’t get any work done). Meanwhile, the collared doves made their flimsy nest in our conifers. We watched their courtship for days, and I was slightly devastated to find remains of one underneath our apple tree – nothing but feet and feathers. The survivor of the sparrow hawk encounter now sits alone on the garden fence, no doubt waiting for its mate. Yesterday we noticed a juvenile barely able to fly following its parent around the garden. Hope, joy, wonder, grace, tranquility and others. In spring I’m deepened by my encounters with life.


20 Replies to “Hope, joy, wonder, grace, tranquility and others.”

  1. What a nice reminder of my trips across the pond. The closest we get to Tits are Black-capped Chickadees locally and Boreal Chickadees up north. You’ve really captured their vitality.

    1. Boreal Chickadees look a little like our coal tit Barry. Pleased my sketch brought back some nostalgia. I have your Ross Island Light resting on my screen One day it might bring a nostalgic trips back to mind.

  2. Your drawing is full of movement… the attention of all three birds has been drawn to something off the page. It sounds like you have found a great space to work. Jane

  3. The sketch had to be drawn looking out my back windows, Keith. I have become an avid feed the birds person and spend my time well, I think, while watching them. What I did not allow time for in my youth, I happily include, now. Watch them! I am sure they have secrets to share. 🙂

  4. Nicely captured (in the best possible sense!) They look exactly like they are about to take fright & fly off any minute.
    Sounds like you’ve been enjoying Spring . Though I hear it’s gone colder again – has where I live too if that’s any consolation! Your cherry blossom is early isn’t it ? We’ve got some come out now & have seen some black caps, chiff chaffs as well as great tits & collared doves visiting the tree. Sad about the one getting eaten (though not for the sparrow hawk I guess!) – where I live it’s cats that get them.

  5. Our cherry is fairly consistent with the blossom only lasting a few days. I also enjoy when the lawn is covered in confetti. It’s been a strange start to the year. Record highs followed by snow and more snow with more on the way. Enjoyed reading about your own birds but not your cats. 🙂

  6. They look curious. I very much like this sketch. Your garden sounds absolutely delightful, although I’m sad about the little dove.

  7. Oh gosh, it’s been a long time since I’ve been by, here. Sorry – bit busy with something and hope to be able to say what later on. Love your great-tits. Did you know the female has a narrower stripe (sometimes none) done the front? Sorry about the casualty. We get collared doves here occasionally. Sparrow hawks intrude here far too often. Lately we’ve had a real, live (and huge) raven visiting.

    1. Gosh, a raven! I’ve watched them on the North Pennines, very agile for their size, not very common either. I miss your posts Val more than you know. Please send me a link to your new project when able.

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