On Numbers (43)

Between rain and dusk

Over the hills and back again

Pedalling fury!

~

n.b. Sometimes you just get lucky and the weather breaks fall perfectly. Taking advantage of this, my cycling buddy and I sped around 43 km of Norfolk countryside today in a couple of hours. It was an almost total escape from some of the nonsense found elsewhere in the media, but not quite. I had to share the photo. We chose to avoid this complete dead-end. You may notice that the sign looks like it’s been badly beaten.

Strangely we seemed to speak to more people in passing than we might have done without Lockdown 2. Norfolk is a place where people talk to each other…at a safe distance. Maybe the distancing helps conversation. What do you think? As someone brought up in England I rather find a little physical distancing to my liking. Depends who it is though.

CLP 12/11/2020

On Pleasure vii

Weary travellers

Take overdue refreshment.

Sun turns sky silver

n.b. Surlingham Ferry. The Ferry House hove into view, somehow knowing a drinks break was needed after 4 hours of an impromptu cycle ride. Interesting cloud formations and sunset too.

CLP 06/09/2020

Red Deer at Dusk

Of course, as luck would have it, the day I decide to rest from writing about the local wildlife and environment, when I am out on an evening cycle ride in rapidly-failing light, I spot a herd of red deer. They are happily rooting around in a harrowed field. They have dared to amble right up to the edge of the local market town. They stand in the last field before the parish sports field.

The antlers of the dominant male are obvious, even in the heavy shadows stretching from trees lining the far side of the field. There is also a smaller male in the group whose immature antlers are just visible. The rest of the herd contains at least three adult hinds.

As is their way, the deer gather in the centre of clearings and open spaces for safety. Such a position allows them to see, hear and smell what is approaching and gives them plenty of options for a safe exit. Aware of me stopping to watch from the roadside hedge, several of the deer look up and the large male moves nervously around the herd, before they set off in a higgledy line towards the darkening wood. One of the younger does was grazing by the top edge of the field before I arrived, but she silently and quickly re-joins the herd as soon as the other animals become twitchy.

The adult stag leads the unhurried retreat, although I sense that they are on a knife-edge, ready to run for cover at the slightest excuse. The dryness of the ground is noticeable from the dust that these nine big beasts kick up as they dissolve into the gloaming.

.

Christopher Perry

16th May, 2020