Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Watch the birdie!

Rain, work, more rain, more work -- the tenor of our recent daily life has been somewhat tedious. There is one exception, however: a pair of blackbirds started nesting in the tree outside our kitchen window, and have now hatched several chicks! We are ridiculously excited by this, stopping to look out of the window on a regular basis and reporting to each other on the progress of our feathered friends. The builders next door came round to apologize for the mess yesterday, and in a fit of TMI, I pointed out the nest and asked him to be careful when sweeping out the gutters. Being English, of course, he appeared to be quiet interested and pointed out that Daddy Blackbird had been making a lot of noise recently, quite clearly defending his new family.

We are twitchers -- and proud of it!

Monday, June 18, 2007

Hanging out in the East Neuk

Off to Scotland last week; part work, part pleasure. We headed along the East Fife Coastal Tourist Route -- which falsely implies that there's another, non-tourist route along the coast -- to my ancestral fishing village. Actually, it's a collection of ancestral fishing villages: Easter and Wester Anstruther, Kilrenny, Cellardyke, and Crail. We were fortunate enough to experience the one decent day of weather in about 2 weeks and, following a hearty porridgey breakfast, took the opportunity to walk along the coastal path from our B&B in Crail to Anstruther. It was delightful -- and dry! We took a tour of the Scottish Fisheries Museum (tagline: "It's bigger than you think" -- true) and decided that while the herring girls might have had fun gutting and grading 60 fish per minute, being "knowledge workers" is much less stenchy. And along the same lines, our municipal swimming pool here in Winchester may be chlorinated and laced with kiddy urine, but at least it's warm.

Anstruther. Towards the end of the harbour is the best fish n' chip shop in Scotland.

Crail. The Dutch got here first and left their gabled houses everywhere.

Crail harbour from the coastal path.

A des res, East Fife style.

Cellardyke. The open air pool, deserted.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

June 3, 2007

St Swithun's church on the Worthy Road and a gorgeous house in Abbots Worthy. Shame it's so close to the M3.