Who am I?

An individual, of no great importance, who is unable to see the natural world as a place for competition. I catch fish, watch birds, derive immense pleasure from simply looking at butterflies, moths, bumble-bees, etc - without the need for rules! I am Dylan and this is my blog - if my opinions offend? Don't bother logging on again - simple!


Wednesday 24 February 2021

Changing seasons

 Two, consecutive, seventy hour weeks of graft plus the nonsense of my melt-down moment, combined to ensure that I won't be starting work until 14.00 hrs, each day up until Friday, when my shift starts and hour earlier. With the mornings now free, time spent out in the garden is just the ticket, given my current state of mind. I've lost nearly half a stone and not slept properly since the fall-out of last Thursday. Bloody insanity, given that all I do is make/pack ink for a living and genuinely didn't think I was that affected by the situation. Obviously mistaken; this mental health aspect has taken me, very much, by surprise. 

I wrote that intro on Monday and things, at work, have calmed down enough for me to start to spot opportunities for a positive outcome from the stupidity of the original situation. I've instigated a formal grievance meeting with HR and that has been scheduled for next Monday when, hopefully, I'll be able to draw a line under the whole sordid affair. So, with that out of the way, what's been going on out in the garden? Well I could easily sum it up with Greenfinches!!!! but wouldn't be painting the bigger picture. There are now two pairs of these wonderful birds visiting the feeders and to put the cherry on the cake, I witnessed a flock of thirteen (BLOODY HELL) flying south along Vine Close on Monday morning. 

The second, un-ringed, male. I captured this image using my
primitive, and very dated, digi-scoping kit.

Black-headed and Common Gulls have been moving through Newlands Farm airspace in dribs and drabs. No numbers, as yet, but the precursor to a much more obvious passage as March gets underway. My BWKm0 listing has been rather static since the Woodcock caper but, having spotted a pair of Lesser Black-backs back on territory at Pyson's Rd Industrial Est. last Tuesday, I knew it was just a matter of time before I recorded one from the garden. Yesterday I did just that.

BWKm0 - No. 47 - Lesser Black-backed Gull

Spring is in the offing, that's for sure, and it's been nice just to spend time outside, early morning being serenaded by Robin, Dunnock, Wren, Blackbird, Song & Mistle Thrushes. Local magpies are already engaged in nest building and Skylarks are chasing around high above the Newlands stubble areas. This morning I watched the first two, migrant, Common Buzzards of the year spiralling over the farm. The first Chiffchaff and Wheatear won't be long in appearing then the flood gates will open. Although I don't want to wish my life away, I'm rather excited by the prospect of more lockdown garden bird watching.


  1. Gawd, although I doubt my garden is any less rural than your's, I now dream about garden birds such as you get. As for Greenfinches, well from a bird that was a common as sparrows here, they're now a real rarity.
    From what I've perceived from reading your blog over the years, I'm as surprised as you at the downturn in your mental state over the work issue, you've always come across as a can't give a fuck kind of guy, it's amazing how some things catch up with you out of the blue. Enjoy your garden.

    1. Cheers for this Derek. I've always considered myself to be "bomb-proof" yet, during this past year have become more aware of the mental health issues being caused by "lockdown". I don't mean licking windows and blurting out rambling gibberish, but the fact that such trivial incidents can be the catalyst for such an over-reaction is an indication of how fragile our mental wellbeing really is. Keep well and enjoy the Spring - all the best - Dyl

  2. Dyl, your over-reaction sounds like one I had once. I was under a lot of stress at the time but still calm and not really thinking about much when, during a general group chat I mentioned something that deep down I (Well I thought I did) knew to be true, only for someone to contradict me on the spot. I damn near exploded in a red mist rage. And seemingly from nowhere. That took us all by surprise. And then it was gone! hmm.

    It's stress. Accumulated stress. And one day it unleashes itself. You yourself have gone through a period of that accumulation, with your late mother-in-law and issues with the house, Covid-19 fall out and then a period of manic work. You need a break. And not going to work permanently is one of them.

    Look! a work ethic is a noble thing, but our society has a measure of work worth and it's called money. If you have money and can pay your way, then you don't need to physically do anything or prove anything. It's a take on Mass=Energy. Well, Money=Work. Retire. You'll get used to it. One day you may wonder why issues at work ever mattered that much if at all.

    Take care and good luck

    1. Hi Ric,
      Many thanks for your thoughtful comment. Bev and I have talked through our options and now have made our decision. I have a road map out of the factory which will allow me to put this issue to bed and walk away on my terms.
      Stress and melt-downs are a very alien concept to me but, as I mentioned in a comment on Gavin's blog, you always were a fiery little sod!
      Cheers mate - Dyl