Tuesday, 24 February 2009


Today I abandoned my decorating plans for a while; moving furniture yesterday and a walk today have resurrected my heart problems so common sense dictates I leave it for a day or two to see how I get on. The walk – from Thingwall Nurseries along to Barnston Dale and then back and home - took me along a footpath I hadn’t been on before. It was extremely enjoyable despite having to take it at about 1 mph.

The lane to the Nursery has a hedgerow with a couple of dead trees in it. I love the appearance of dead wood and it always pleases me when people don’t tidy it up. It is an important habitat for insects and fungi.

This is Lower Thingwall Lane, Thingwall. This beautiful barn conversion is for sale... Pity I haven’t got £500,000 to spare. Mind you – the details don’t point out that it backs on to the local pub.

“A local landmark this beautifully converted Barn originates from the 17th/18th century, being part of the farm tending the land north of the property of Lower Thingwall Lane which was the old Liverpool Road. The accommodation is outstanding with a magnificent dining reception hall with further seating area and galleried landing, fabulous lounge/sitting room with cast iron range, farmhouse dining kitchen complete with Aga, pantry and utility. The accommodation is versatile for family living and also offers a ground floor shower room, further reception room &/or ground floor sixth bedroom, five bedrooms and bathroom to the first floor. There are impressive grounds to the property with car parking, courtyard with ornamental pond, bread oven, seating and barbeque area, large canopied porch, superb gardens with arbor and generous rural land plot to the lower garden with gated access, stable/workshop.”

The fields off the lane had plenty of horses and ponies in them.

The lane turns into a bridleway and this will be a delightful short walk during the summer.

There were plenty of birds in the lane – Great Tits singing loudly; a huge flock of small birds that I couldn’t identify against the light, twittering away; goldfinches; a Magpie squawking; Wood Pigeons flapping loudly and so on.

A Grey Squirrel took a good look at me for a few minutes.

Thursday, 19 February 2009


The Snowdrops are reaching their peak.

Sunday, 15 February 2009

Saturday 14th February 2009

Jo and I went to Hoylake tp take a look around the auction house and charity shops. A few books and some clothes made the charity shop visits well worth while.

The street furniture in Hoylake has a rope theme, presumably to reflect its seaside nature.

When I saw the Town Hall Clock I was reminded of a poem but I cannot find it on the Internet. I did find a couple of poems with Town Hall Clock references but neither was the one that is hovering around in the back of my mind.

People who gaze at the town-hall clock,
Waiting to hear the hour.

HAROLD MONRO ("Strange Meetings")

The clock in the Town Hall is ticking away
The seconds of our lives every hour of the day
And even for the babe in the pram time it doesn't wait;
On the young and the old there is a use by date.

The feeble old fellow to time losing hair
Of his own mortality he is aware
A good innings one might say he did enjoy
Still he'd love one more chance to live as a boy.

Of great feats of bravery we often hear
But the bravest the fear of death even do fear
And the reaper the one who has the final say
The wealthy and poor will make equal one day.

The clock in the Town Hall it keeps ticking on
And with each tick one more second of our lives gone
And the reaper whose praises none does wish to sing
Will one day take care of the emperor and king.

FRANCIS DUGGAN ("The Clock in the Town Hall")

This little fellow was waiting patiently outside a shop.

We had a coffee at Wetherspoons but also bought a cake to take back for a coffee and crossword at home. I had a coffee meringue. Yum. A great end to the morning.

Friday, 6 February 2009

Friday 6th February 2009

This ice pattern on one of the ponds was fantastic. The photo does not do it justice. I couldn’t quite get the angle / light right. The straight lines are also ice coming out from the edge of the pond towards the middle. A very strange formation.

I was quite amazed to find a nest in the Willow tree this morning. It is obviously last year’s – probably a Blackbird’s. I look up into the willow all summer long seeking caterpillars and yet I’d never spotted the nest. Although the leaves were late in falling – mid-November- I’ve had eight weeks in which to observe the nest in the bare branches and yet I’ve missed it. It makes me wonder just how much more wildlife is around that I have missed.

Tuesday, 3 February 2009

Tuesday 3rd February 2009

It continued to snow overnight but the sun shone all day so much of it melted away.

Monday, 2 February 2009

Monday 2nd February 2009

Most of the country has been paralysed by snow. We had a mere half inch of the stuff but at least it gave me an excuse to take photos. (Just as if I had ever needed an excuse to get the camera out.)

First it was trip around the garden.

Then along the road to Marlfield Lane.

And on the way back from the shops I came through Pensby’s one piece of woodland on Fishers Lane where I discovered even half an inch of snow and leaf mould can hide a six inch deep muddy puddle. Feet and boots are now drying out...

Sunday 1st February 2009

The Green Hellebore (Helleborus viridis) was in flower today.