Sunday, 17 September 2017

Little miracles

By my very approximate estimation, Ted's summer playmates, the swallows, will be approaching the Pyrenees by now.  I think they left here about five days ago, embarking on their miraculous journey to South Africa.  Covering about 200 miles a day, they fly through western France, across the Pyrenees, down eastern Spain into Morocco, and then across the Sahara to reach their final destination, where they will overwinter in the sunshine, before coming all the way back again.  Their departure leaves me in no doubt that summer is over and the year is moving on.  But Ted and I will be looking out for them again in the spring, and frankly we can't wait for their return.  Everything about a swallow is joyous.

On 5 September they were beginning to gather along wires and amongst small trees across the golf course.  By the middle of last week, the skies were empty where previously they had been habitually swooping and soaring.
By contrast, starlings are now arriving here from Northern Europe, to spend their winter in warmer climes!  They will be kicking around until about March next year, minding the shop until the swallows return.

Saturday, 16 September 2017

Saturday evening stroll .....

which turned into a sprint home!

In the vanishing daylight, once the golfers have all gone away, I can take the dogs out on to the neighbouring 9 hole golf course.  The coast is clear.  This evening there was an amazing sunset, which distracted me from the looming rain storm fast approaching from the north!  We had to make a very hasty retreat, soaked, but with one or two photos to remind me of the range of beautiful colours in the sky!

Monday, 11 September 2017

A changing landscape

It is almost mid-September and the countryside is looking very different from only one month ago.  The cereal crops are being harvested and the fields are criss-crossed with tractor tracks, carving through the fine lines drilled with the crop earlier in the year.  Tilly is not keen on walking in newly cut fields.  The stubble is prickly and uncomfortable for her, so she trots along the track made by one giant tractor tyre and I walk along the other.  Ted isn't bothered either way!

The neighbouring field of barley was still in the process of being cut when I went to photograph the straw megaliths, which had been left across the landscape.  
In the far distance you can see the three Forth bridges, 
and behind the combine harvester, Arthur's Seat looms.