A Gentle Ramble Through My Life
Well yes the sun is shining but there is also a cold wind which means the beaches are either sand blasting places or sun traps, either way the sea is still cold and when we have been to the coast recently the beaches were not exactly crowded. Which is a shame as we have some of the best beaches along our stretch of coastline, besides the main sandy stretches there are little coves dotted around which makes discovering them interesting. Places to fish from or topless sunbathing or just a quiet secluded beach for romance.
It’s also where I get some inspiration for my books. The sea is a wonderful conflicting place calm one moment a raging tempest the next and just sometimes something in between. A walk along an empty beach or sitting with a rod waiting for a fish to take the bait these are moments when stories find me. Whilst looking out to sea I am joined by characters new and old all jostling for attention linked by a love of seafaring and somewhere in there is always a new story.
For those of you not familiar with our life these are our Petanca friends whom Michael plays in the competitions with. He was at Fraga a while ago and won wine and a round of goats cheese which we have literally just finished. Then last weekend the club had a paella and Petanca day on Sunday (blog to follow) and I and my partner were top in our group so we played the top team in the other group to see who was top over all. We came second, wine and olives were our prizes and very welcome to. The paella was a sea food one with salad, dried meats, crisps and olives to whet our appetites. Only when we felt the first spots of rain were we convinced it was time to go home. Mind you we had been there since 8.30am and by the time the rain appeared it was close to 3.30pm.
Right so What’s Up Doc? well when you get older things begin to squeak and rattle (mostly from the pills) and that is a question I could have asked three times this last week. The medical staff is very good here, go for any test and they not only tell you the results but give you a printout so you can see how you’re doing, no secret squirrels here. Well where to start, a visit to my dr found that I was doing well so she thought she would try to lessen the tablets I take “we will try leaving off the aspirin for a month.” Ok sounded good to me but after a couple of weeks I began to get headaches and stuff so I made another appointment with her to let her know things were not going well, and went back on the aspirin. Headaches disappeared and felt better so when I told her about it she asked how long I had been on them 8 years I said oh my god, quick as a flash she had written me a prescription for some other tablets which help to safeguard the stomach so now back to normal. Then I got a phone call from the hospital, need to see the anaesthetist as they are going to operate on my hand next month this entails two visits and an ECG before they will confirm a date. Looking forward to this as hopefully my little finger will finally be straight and I will have to be chauffeured around meaning I can look at the country side and spot the birds.
This is where their cage sits during the night and on windy days with the nest box facing the other way for protection. During the day they are at the other end of the FFZ enjoying the sun and shouting at the birds. But as all kids do when we go shopping and return home first thing they do is to stand on their perches and shout until one of us appears and gives them a treat. Or if Michael is at his desk working with the window open they shout and holler till he either speaks to them or I go and sit in the FFZ with them taking my laptop/tablet with me. Yep I know it’s confusing but sometimes we both contribute to these blogs just for the hell of it.
(c) Michael Douglas Bosc
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In the Beginning – Continue Reading »
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The valley is a source of constant change, surprise and stunning views, even on a day such as today. Up here we can have sunlight and think it’s a good morning. However one glance down the valley tells the true story. If we can see across to the Mountains clearly then thats fine, the sun will shine it will be warm/hot depending on time of year. However, if like today we look out and can’t see the mountains then we KNOW it’s going to be a mixed/dull day depending on which way the weather pattern and wind is blowing. So the next sunny but blowy day I decided that after everything in the FFZone being soaked it was time for action!
The Fly Free Zone
Remember this? Well as you know we have the boys and discovered two things about the roof and the vine. First off the vine was so heavy it began tearing the netting with it’s weight. This meant that we couldn’t let the boys out without being there incase they found one of the holes. Then there was the little matter of rain, when it did, the wooden roof was basically a sieve, water poured in. So with summer on the doorstep bringing those nasty black biting flies we decided it was time to sort it out. I had already laid a new floor and tidied up round the pillars. Plant pots placed table and chairs in situ all looked very nice, then it rained!!!! so I thought, lets get this done. A visit to the local builders merchant sorted out the roof, 3 panels of painted corrugated did the trick, and new netting added the finishing touches. We did not remove the old netting it will stop the boys from damaging the new stuff when they fly around. So on a not so dull day we set to work.
I was up the ladder undoing the screws then passing the planks down to my wife, Earlier I had cut some cross members shaped the ends to fit the two supporting trunks then nailed them into positing. Finally with a little ‘heath robinson’ know how plus a wife with a broom (careful folks lol) I had the first panel up, then the wind got up! So whilst I was getting the bolts to secure the panel in place my wife was up the ladder holding on to the panel to stop it moving, one up two more to go. Surprisingly these went up quite quickly and were soon in place, then it rained. Not a lot, just enough to test the roof and know what IT WORKED!! not a leak anywhere. So I moved a water cube down to the side ran temporary guttering and it duly rained. We moved the vine to the side of the little house so it has a nice new home and is leafing away nicely, lots of green shoots, plenty of sun so hopefully we will get some grapes this year. The weather then kindly rained on and off over the next few days so the cube is now full.
Well it appears they were not successful with their first attempt at breeding but they are having another go. I have turned their nest box to face the wall so that the wind doesn’t blow straight into it. A necessity as over the past few days the wind has been blowing a hooley.
(c) Michael Douglas Bosc Author
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R.I.P “You are doing a wonderful job Jeremy, a wonderful job, yes indeed, St Margaret would be proud of you my boy.” “Thank you Prime Minister.” “Yes you walk tall in …
Source: Hunt For Destruction
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I am not a supporter of Jeremy Corbyn too much of a pacifist for my liking, however he is playing the EU referendum very well. Criticised by the Tory press for not supporting the Prime Minister…
Source: Referendum, But whose?
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Ok I will start with the garden as I have spent long wasted hours trying to get it organized in between bouts of a bad cold, so I finally gave in and decided to design the back garden with the help from Sir. We have almost finished landscaping it – not grand just a simple design based on the shape – and now the daffs and tulips are beginning to come through. The Hyacinths are nearly over, edging plants planted so I can finish off the bits and pieces before the summer heat arrives. These are wild daffs that grow in the forest, I rescued them from the digger about a year ago and they finally flowered this year. Their perfume is really something for such little flowers. As for the grape hyacinths this one appeared in the pot please don’t ask how it just did but you can see how small they are and they are all over the place, another one I have to move when digging.
I had a nice surprise when we visited our friends, my gardening mate said I have just the thing for you, grows like wildfire and spreads so make sure you plant it only where you need it. Pretty little flower but it self-seeds so will have to watch it, but it will do very nicely and add some colour to the back garden.
Now Euphorbia. I have been going on about these plants for ages how they are rampant up here so I thought I’d show what I mean. The bush on its own is the one growing in the border behind the house and these others are at the entrance to the forest. I thought they looked good with the wood behind them, and yes I do know they are poisonous. They are allowed to grow up here but if I have to move them I pull them up without breaking the stems so keeping the sap away. We have 5 different types from small heads to large double heads, but this is the first year I have seen such a display as above.
Now for those of you who know these things I have a little task. Above and below are photos were taken of two different plants one of which, I think, is Borrage what the other one is I do not know, but again they grow in abundance here. If anyone can tell me what they are I would be grateful. I just let them go if they are in the garden as they make a nice display I collect seeds but I can’t sow them to early as the ants munch everything up here, bit like a Tom and Jerry cartoon.
We do not know who this is but he is light enough to sit on a piece of grass and only bend it. I did think it was a Sky Lark as we have one or two up here, what ever he is he’s welcome. We have not seen our Robins this year but Boris Blackbird is going strong so is the little Wall Walker he nested under the little house roof again. We have seen a Little Owl but not been able to get a photo yet, and today we saw our first Blue Tit. There are plenty of Great Tits about and we have heard the Nightingale, it woke Michael the other morning just before it got light. So I can say that the forest is gradually getting back to normal, although we haven’t seen any Wrens down the track we have seen them along the river road. I also have a secure place where I tip the unwanted seed when cleaning the Boys out and the wild birds go there. I have noticed that there are green shoots growing so will be interesting to see what come of this.
Talking of which unfortunately we have no news on this front. They are still sitting but as we have been told by a breeder they are a young pair so they may not produce any young this time round. We wondered if moving them in and out was disturbing them so we are in the process of sorting out the FFZ to make it more ‘Boys’ friendly, new netting and replacing the old roof then perhaps they will nest again and produce babies. In the meantime they are still shouting and fighting over things. Calling to the other birds especially the Black Redstart. But the funniest thing was when the song bird started singing they sat and listened no squawking or shouting they just sat there, wonderful. Oh and they will always be the Boys or Big Moma X and the Cooler King to me they are soooo funny.
(c) Michael Douglas Bosc
Posted in About my writing, Forest Life, Our Life | Tagged birding, birds, boats, books, farming, forestry, gardening, restaurants, vineyards, weather, wildlife, wine | Leave a Comment »