1,597 days: pause for reflection

After 1,597 days living on this little plot, a moment’s refection on ways it has changed during that time:

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As people who have lived in the West during a time that made us “privileged and lucky human beings” – more so than any generation in the past… or in the future, and then burdened by Barack Obama’s assertion:

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while knowing that those efforts to “do something about it” are ultimately doomed does pose the question of how to live in modern times.

“Then what is the answer? Not to be deluded by dreams.
To know that great civilisations have broken down into violence,
and their tyrants come, many times before.
When open violence appears, to avoid it with honor or choose
the least ugly faction; these evils are essential.
To keep one’s own integrity, be merciful and uncorrupted
and not wish for evil; and not be duped
By dreams of universal justice or happiness. These dreams will
not be fulfilled.
To know this, and know that however ugly the parts appear
the whole remains beautiful.”

And so our answer takes the form of a small patch of the Earth and all that lives there. To nurture it while letting it nurture us.

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Sunny Bank

Behind The Lake

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there is a raised bank

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which as well as providing a dog lookout post, as it catches the sun throughout the day, is a place for flowering plants to attract bees and other insects

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Seems to be working:

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Today in Numbers

One gooseberry swelling on the stem

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Two frogs warming by the pond

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Three petals curling on the Iris

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Thirteen chicks hatched this weekend

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Seventeen flies trapped by the Sundew

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Seventy-two tomato plants potted in the polytunnel

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and an Infinite number of May blossoms all around

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Watery Worlds

The little pond in the corner of Polytunnel Zenith

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is full of life

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These two have moved in

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basking on the sunny stones

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enjoying the insect life in the warm still air

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sharing the water

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Meanwhile down at the Meadow Lake the amount of plant cover is growing

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but still a lot of clear water to catch the sky

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Last year’s Bullrush flowers

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are adding to the mixture

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making their own floating ecosystems

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Lily leaves are surfacing

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Round the margins

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our honey bees pause for a drink

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The damselflies have arrived

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The smallest pond of all

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is packed with lilies and newts

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The Birds and The Bees

Avian amour is all around.

We think we have three male Pied Flycatchers. That might not be as simple as three pairs as they are known for their polygyny.

This one

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has a prime beat for flying insects – over the compost heaps.

House sparrows, on the other hand, are monogamous but are meant to like social nesting sites. In spite of having this box available to supply that facility for many years this is the first time it has been fully utilised

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Strange pairings are occurring in the duck run with each of these Muscovy drakes having struck up a relationship with an Aylesbury duck

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This pair have mated for life and aren’t going anywhere

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We lost our bee colony to wasps late last summer, which was a sad end particularly as they had survived being buried in snow earlier that year.

A few weeks ago a replacement colony arrived and today we were able to add a second

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and at the same time our mentor helped us mark the Queen in the first hive

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