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Sunday, 26 January 2014

Cley, Rain, Rain & More Rain!

Eye Field, Coastguards, Cley.

It rained ALL day! Well, I say all day, there was a couple of brief interludes when it didn't! A shockingly, appalling day to say the least.

I arrived at Cley and went straight to the NWT Visitor Centre for a cheese scone! I timed this sooooo badly. There was a large queue of teenagers with clip-boards (obviously doing some kind of survey) all wanting coffee, latte, hot chocolate, some who couldn't make their mind up and so on. I queued patiently and eventually got my scone and managed to sneak a seat on the bench with window view. Don't get me wrong, it was fabulous to see the centre so busy, they need to be busy after the recent closure, but I just wish I had got there a bit earlier! Whilst enjoying my scone I watched the rain pelting down, with no sign of it giving up.

It's January and not the time for deliberately getting soaked looking for migrants, so I opted for dude, car birding. I re-located to Coastguards and positioned the car next to the Eye Field so I could view the 'Eye Puddle' and beyond. I poured a coffee and had a piece of coffee cake (which Vivien bought me for my birthday tomorrow and yes I have opened it early!). It was quite nice sitting in the car listening to the rain lashing down, but the novelty eventually wore off. The rain continued all afternoon. I dozed, drank more coffee and waited for the rain to stop. Much later on the rain did stop for a few moments and as it did, I saw a small bird appearing from the long grass – it was a male Stonechat! This really cheered the afternoon up and then a second one, a female! These stonechats stayed feeding on and off for the rest of the afternoon and at times they were really close to me. The wind and rain were driving in the car when I wound the window down, which didn't help my camera lens at all. Took some fabulous pictures of a Lapwing close up, or so I thought, until I realised there were tons of rain spots on the lens! Rain and cameras do not mix, I should know that more than anyone with my past mishaps!!! Apart from a lone black-headed gull, I saw nothing else!

At 3.15pm I whizzed up to the NWT Visitor Centre to meet up with Pete S. for a quick cup of tea. Whilst waiting for Pete I was chatting to Jean (from Sheringham) and she was telling me how she had watched thousands and thousands of Pink-footed Geese flying unusually low (after dusk), just above the breakers of the sea last night – this went on for a considerably time. She said although it was almost dark she could still see them flying just above the waves. After my tea and brief catch up with Pete I then left to go home.


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