A Family Affair

While we hide inside from both virus and cold, I thought I’d share these feathered cousins with you all.

Covid and corvids, alliterative word-play ties. Just a trifle, for now, for my Jackdaw followers.

Hope you enjoy my occasional ‘cute little chatters.‘ Please don’t give me the bird.

Bridge Of Sighs

Remember this? The outside world?

With the news that children are to begin the return to school from the eighth of March, and that grassroots kids’ football is hoped to resume not long after this, I managed to peel my son, James, off his PlayStation to go on what I hope will be a series of regular walks to build up his fitness. Mine too.

We set off down a long road which, despite us coming from the same place, some of my friends refer to as The Mad Mile. I, however, know it as The Heywood Stretch.

At the end of this road you come to a roundabout bridge which looks down onto the M62, as shown in the photograph.

We stopped there, for a breather, the wind blowing in our faces as those below us, those fellow lockdown escapees, blew their horns and waved up at us in a semblance of some barely remembered social interaction as they disappeared from view.

“Why are they waving at us?” James asked.

“They are just being friendly,” I replied.

“Do they think we’re gonna jump?”

(Long pause.) “I hope not.”

Speed Of Lights

Wrapping up well, I took my dog Bryn on a walk tonight. I stopped on a hill, high on my estate, to take a photograph (1) of the lights of Oldham, shining in the distance. Photographs 2 and 3 shows just what can happen when you’re taking a photograph while holding a dog lead and the damn dog decides to go for a run 😂

Maybe I’ve discovered a new art form. To go with the new puddle.

One Of Life’s Cruel Coincidences

In my last post of four days ago I mentioned, among other things, my admiration of the RNLI whose volunteers are routinely heading into conditions that would make the rest of us falter.

Well it just so happens that, this time round, my wife knows the relative of one of the three crew members of the missing fishing vessel Nicola Faith. Despite two days of searches by seven lifeboats from different stations, it is looking like the search has now ended without success.

Prayers for the three fishermen and their families, and thanks to all the agencies involved for their heroic effort.

Islands In This Cold, Cold Sea

Mornings following mornings following mornings, sitting with a coffee and nowhere to go.

But I can still travel. Without going out of my door as Harrison sang.

During this lockdown we are all becoming islands, but still part of a vast archipelago, casting our messages in technological bottles that lap against each other’s shores.

Tides and tidings, what do they bring today?

The RNLI had launched a vessel from their Aberystwyth base, just twenty minutes ago. I follow many of the stations around our coastline on Twitter, marvelling at the courage of the volunteers who regularly head out into the kind of conditions that would make me blanch.

As well as the personal Twitter sites of the bases around the shorelines that I’m familiar with, it’s the RNLI: Out On A Shout that gives the regular updates. The listings though are sparse, just postings of times and places, critically cryptic (or should that be cryptically critical?), prompting a visit to the named stations in the hunt for further details.

‘Cold cleavings of the sea’ now comes to mind, something from George Mackay Brown’s The Masked Fisherman which I was reading last night. Everything leads to something else, an ever moving current.

Closer to home I learn of the death of a local church minister that I was acquainted with. I didn’t know him well, but he was a popular figure around here as the many technological bottles testify to. The last time I’d seen him he appeared quite gaunt, the way time affects those who have not a lot of meat on their bones to begin with.

There seems to be a lot of people leaving us at the moment. People once present now cut adrift, disappearing beneath the surface of vision.

I decide on a refill, taking a glance out of the kitchen window. It is yet another cold start, the sun is trying its best, though.