1 EAGLETON NOTES: Thankful Thursday



Thursday, 24 May 2012

Thankful Thursday

Buzzards and Corncrakes

There used to be buzzards mewing and flying around the valley at the side of my house all the time but in the last few years they seem to have disappeared. I've not been able to fathom out why that should be. So yesterday I was pleased to hear the mewing of a buzzard again even though I didn't see it. I also saw, very close to the house, a buzzard being chased by a couple of gulls. So there is hope the valley will have its buzzards back this year.

I keep hearing a Corncrake too. There are not many sheep in the area now to disturb them so provided the local cats, Hooded Crows, Black Backed Gulls, Buzzards and Hedgehogs leave them alone we might have a few more of this very rare bird by the end of the summer.

A neighbour told me this morning that when you are doing a spot weld you know that you have got it right when it sounds like a Corncrake. The things you learn.

No Electricity

The electricity was switched off recently between 0900 and 1600 for general line maintenance in the area. I found the main inconvenience was the lack of the wi-fi which shows where we are at these days when everything in the house seems to be plugged in. What really struck me though was how quiet the house was. There was no music and none of the 'usual' things one associates with electrical appliances such as washing machines and the like. But the eerie quiet in my kitchen puzzled me. Then I realised just how much noise two fridges and a cooling mat for a laptop in a room make.

Waterfalls and Beethoven Sonatas

As I type this the the sun is shining, there's not a breath of a breeze and it's in the 20s at 9 in the morning. I am listening to the waterfall into the pond outside the wide open window. I am also listening to the final three of Beethoven's 32 Piano Sonatas having listened to them all since I got back from NZ. I had the vinyl LPs of some of them with Wilhelm Kempff and when CDs came out I bought the whole set and have played it ever since (the recordings date from 1965). Now Paul Lewis has recorded them all and I have a choice.

The Thankful Bit

So this morning as I wandered around the garden in shorts, jandals and a light shirt thinking how fortunate I was to live in two such beautiful places on this earth on this spectacularly beautiful morning I was thankful for being alive. As I sit here, though, my thankfulness is more specific. I am thankful for the fact that I live in an environment free from the sounds of the city. I am thankful for the sounds I have experienced and I am thankful for the silence.

And now I'm off to visit the dentist!


  1. Having a choice when it comes to sounds is always best. You had me all over the place today with this post. I know you've written about buzzards before but I had to look it up again because I couldn't remember. (The Swedish name is too different.) Corncrake too but that I should have been able to guess. I think I even know the sound. Then I started wondering why, because I'm really hopeless at recognizing bird calls. So how do I know what a corncrake sounds like? It's not like I keep running into them! ;) I had to ponder a while, but I think I saw them in a nature show on TV not all that long ago!

    1. Yes it was a rather all-over-the-place sort of post. I'd written it in bits as you might have guessed.

  2. You certainly have a lot to be thankful for. Having the ability to do what you do and live in 2 different places each year must be quite an experience. And to basically miss the winter would be quite lovely.


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