ruffled feathers

It’s autumn, and the hedgerows are bright with berries. But there are other flashes of red, too, competing with the bryony, hips and haws.

This feathery tangle is Robin’s pincushion, which I found on the wild roses around the racecourse.
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russet-brown pauses

Although life and work are gradually returning to some kind of normality, when weather and time permit, I continue my occasional walks over the local racecourse. It helps to clear the digital world from my mind and lungs, and offers me an opportunity to reset after spending so many hours sitting in the same chair, in front of the same screen.

But, unless I know I have plenty of time to focus on the world around me, I’m unlikely to bother to carry my camera. So although I like to keep a photographic record of the things I see, I have to rely on the camera on my phone, and the photos are not usually great quality. Still, they serve their purpose of reminding me of what I saw when, and sometimes they’re good enough to supply images for this blog.
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bug-eyed monsters

I wonder if schools and other organisations still give books to children as prizes if they do well in exams. Certainly it was common when I was a little girl. Somewhere among my books, I think I’d find ones awarded to my mother, as well, so it’s a practice that goes back a long way here in the UK.

The reason I am wondering is because I’ve been wishing I could find my Observer’s Book of Common Insects and Spiders, which was the book I claimed as my prize after doing well in a Scripture exam I must have taken through the Sunday School or Girls’ Brigade.
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bee-long days

I guess this is a typical British summer: after another short “heatwave” last week, we’ve just had a weekend of almost continuous rain.

At the start of the week, the world was a multi-coloured blaze of flowers and the buddleia-scented air was busy with butterflies and bees.

But this weekend it’s been cold and grey, and even the feathers, bells and face paints of the local folk festival have done little to brighten the atmosphere.
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tiger tiger

Q. What’s black and white and red all over?
A. A sunburnt penguin.

or, possibly,

Yesterday’s newspaper.

I guess that that traditional gem becomes less and less appropriate as an answer as newspapers are now printed in colour, and, anyway, we tend to read them online as a never-ending rabbit hole of hyperlinks, not as a monochrome printed artefact.
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