Tuesday, 18 May 2021

The Bridge Over the M3 at Fleet Services and Some Noise Cancelling Headphones.

What to write? 

This is getting hard. 

It’s been a while I know, but as we walk slowly out into the light now much of the madness has passed, a fug has once again descended. Time was when I could bang out multiple chunks of guff for platforms various of an evening

Damn this poxy pando!
Yes there is weed and yes there is water and the river carries a sparkle that only occurs at this time of year. Mayfly are putting in the occasional appearance and fish are slowly coming round to the idea that they may make a reasonable meal but other than that not much new to report. Swallows are about and Lord Ludg raises a glass to a squadron of swifts each evening from his garden throne but brer swift was a tad tardy in putting in it’s opening appearance. 
A warmer week has resulted in a more verdant locale. 

Last weekend Madam and myself moved south to Sway. She to score a cricket match, me to walk dogs and just be somewhere else talking to different people. On the edge of the New Forest the ground is surrounded by substantial oaks all of which were pretty much in full leaf and several weeks ahead of the oaks that live along this river valley. 
This week’s cricket, a home tie against Alton, fell to the weather, which was a shame as Child B had fled the capital in order to take part. We ran him home on the Sunday morning and visited the outside area of a Lebanese restaurant in Fulham, or possibly Chelsea, for lunch. The mighty repast was mostly meat based with the occasional chickpea and today, with a view to extending life, we felt duty bound to undertake a “meat free Monday” 

Which was nice (see Fast Show) 
Oh yes, a life changing moment. 

While working with machinery I always wear ear protection especially so now that one of my ears doesn’t work and I need to look after the one that does. I will often listen to soothing music, talking book or podcast piped in from my clever phone. My new clever phone monitors decibel levels delivered to my ears and got quite cross a few times while strimming this spring. A pair of noise cancelling headphones have been purloined and the clever phone is happy. The noise cancelling feature means that I can listen to said soothing music at a lower level and the good ear is thus protected.

That’s noise cancelling headphones everyone, get them if you can,
Apologies should have put P at the beginning of previous paragraph to indicate product placement. 

P: That’s noise cancelling headphones everyone. 

In weed news, the Dever is full of the stuff. Ranunculus is in flower and holding water up well, banks are becoming soft and mushy and the June weed cut will, for the second successive year, be a heavy one, which is as it should be and why it is the longest designated weed cutting period of the summer.  
In fly news, the fly are slow to put in an appearance, which may be temperature related. Mayfly are just beginning to show and last week we had several days of heavy hawthorn hatches which points to things happening a couple of weeks later thsi year than one would expect. 

In Beaver news, we have no beaver in the Dever valley, for which some continue to give great thanks. 
In Tarantula news, we have no tarantula in the Dever valley, for which we also give great thanks. There were tarantula on “Cruising with Jane McDonald” last night and they were not doing the dance.

Sneaky feckers (Tarantula, not Jane McDonalds per se), they hide in holes popping out to pounce on prey; although Jane McDonald hiding in a hole, leaping out to deliver a killer blow or possibly belt out some ditty classified as"easy listening" could be equally terrifying.

I’ll stick with the rabbit as my hole dwelling demon of first choice. The nemesis of the allotment, he can be dealt with reasonably effectively, doesn’t offer a deadly bite and, if cooked long enough, is the food of the gods. 
On the allotment the taytos are up and suitably ridged. Broad beans promise much and strawberries bear flowers. The one struggle has been runner beans. I had great success with “Tenderstar” last year but this year three packets of seeds have failed to germinate and rotted in their pots. I’ve now gone back to the safe pair of hands that is “Enorma”. 
Driving up the M3 to deliver Child B back to the smoke, Madam commented that the last time we had driven up the M3 we were 51 years old and both my ears worked. 

We’re 53 now, we’ll forget the ears. 

Pre Pando, we’d pound up the M3 many times a year on the way to somewhere else or just to visit bits various of Das Kapital. 

I never imagined I’d feel nostalgic for a trip up the M3. 

In its interminable transfer to “smart motorway” status it was the stuff of Dante. 

Last Sunday as we delivered Child B back to the smoke, we took our time, idly rolling along cheerily pointing out sights that we had not seen for sometime. 

The short deceleration lane at Junction 5 to Odiham, the brown sign to Birdworld and the bridge over the motorway at Fleet services being particular highlights. 

We’re going to try the M27 soon, which is in the throes of attaining “smart motorway” status which may instigate further traffic based nostalgia in the months to come. 

Got there in the end, 850 words plus, which used to be like falling off a bike back in the day.  
One step. two step, one step two step, one step two step, slowly we walk back out into the light (after Bill Hicks)

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