D iscovered this jellyfish/party balloon hybrid on a beach in Co. Fingal, Ireland, last week. Hybridisation is well understood by the science community, but never before has it been observed between a living organism and a man-made material.
This further compounds the problem of persistent plastic in our oceans – jellyfish today but just imagine if cod start to hybridise with crisp packets, or tuna with lucozade bottles. It’ll be chaos down at Morrisson’s fish counter.*1
*1Plastic pollution is actually seriously shit – we don’t deserve this lovely planet.
During a recent trip to Donegal, I took the King's shilling and boarded the good ship "Cloudy Bay" for a race around Loch Swilly. The only boats I've ever been on until then were ferry services, a canoe once, and a raft made out of chemical drums and bailer twine on the Llangollen canal. I explained my low-tar jolly Jack status to captain Connor and he was unperturbed. A good time was had by all. I even got to do proper rope pulling, some Lea Ho's, ready abouts and stuff. We came last.
Well, inside the house it was quiet enough, but outside our back door there was a wildfire raging. Still is 5 days later.
No denying it. (Opposite Blaen Dyffryn, Plantlife nature reserve, Lampeter)
Totally delighted to be the publishing part of this new collection by Brecon poet Gareth Writer-Davies. Here, in 68 pages, Davies fleshes out his twin subjects of love and sex in poems of affection, sardonic humour and a characteristic lightness of touch that makes his first collection both exceptionally readable and an intimate pleasure. So the blurb says… Anyway, buy one <here> it’s a gorgeous publication.
Had these two plastic cups followed their intended life they might have spent the last 25 years in a landfill site. As it was, they were retrieved by us and have spent all this time as a nursery – mostly for broad-bean seedlings. Their time, though, is clearly up. They can no longer hold themselves together let alone the humus and root of a burgeoning vegetable crop. So this is their retirement day. Thank you plastic cups. Farewell. You may now take your chances in the recycling bin. And below, further evidence of overwork of single-use plastic.
We have a family of grey wagtails moved into our garage. It was due to be renovated this summer – that will have to wait a while now. A security webcam diverted to naturewatch duties.
From Preston and the excitement of the Dull Men's Club outing we drove straight to Fenns Bank for an overnight in the new (life-changing) VW van and have breakfast with the wildlife on the edge of Britain's most southerly raised bog. I grew up[sic] here, and it has become an annual pilgrimage for us to partake in the isolation and contemplation this place gives. Not to mention some amazing bird watching. Herewith a selection of photos. Most speak for themselves, but of note is the remains of WWII Star Fish site - decoy bonfires to lure the Luftwaffe, and the photo with the red arrow is probably the saddest photo I've ever taken - as a young boy these fields were full of lapwings, vast flocks of them that darkened the sky. Today, this single individual who, although a speck in the photo, didn't seem to know what to do with himself and just wandered around, confused "Where is everyone?"
I was delighted, not to say, honoured to be a guest speaker at the recent “Delightfully Dull, Brillilantly Boring” evening, hosted by Dull Men’s Club at UCLA Preston. The evening was actually as far from dull as I am from accession to the throne of England. Now, that’s quite a long way. Dulluminaries present were Kevin Beresford, president of the Roundabout Appreciation Society – in fine form having partaken in the refreshments with gusto during proceedings; Richard & Mrs Gottfried who together have visited, played and documented 819 crazy golf courses around the world; Andrew Dowd who has visited every one of 2,548 railway stations in the UK. Not to mention Grover Click – park bench appreciator and Assistant Vice President of D.M.C. (the highest position attainable); a fine and illuminating talk by Dr Boredom aka Dr Sandi Mann, author of The Upside of Downtime. And last and by no means dullest Elliot Windmill, a trainee dullard who just wants to be duller.
Much fun was had not to mention illumination and refreshment. Oh and we sold a few books.