As expected, I woke up with the usual Blakeney Point hip ache, in fact I felt pretty shattered all over. It takes me a day to recover from that walk. Woke up early, but decided to stay under the duvet for a while longer. Eventually got up and ready for my Sunday Roast date with Pete S., Eddie M. and John F. at The Three Swallows pub in Cley.
The Three Swallows does a very good Sunday Roast and caters equally well for vegetarians – I had a nut roast with my yorkshire pudding, roast potatoes and veg, followed by Bailey's Cheesecake. 'Asbo' the pub cat is still going strong – he is such a gorgeous, ginger tabby cat, but apparently can strike out at any time, hence his name! It was lovely having lunch with Pete, Eddie and John – we seem to have got into a habit of eating here every now and again.
Pete went home for a rest (had been at work all morning), Eddie and John went off to the Warham Raptor Roost. I went to CleySpy to collect my birthday present, which had been very kindly purchased for my birthday from my Mother and sister Vivien. My present at CleySpy was a Manfrotto MVH500AH Head which is a much improved upgrade to my current Manfrotto 128RC head. This will improve panning when doing phonescoping and videoing with either the phone or SLR.
The lovely Suzanne who works at CleySpy, had very kindly wrapped my birthday present and adorned with a fancy bow – what a lovely surprise! All the staff had also written in a 50th Birdy birthday card for me – made my day! Don't know where they managed to find that card from! 'A First Class Service' indeed and thank you to all the staff there. I felt really bad about unwrapping the present to be honest, but had to really, in case there were any issues with attaching the new head.... which there was, because of my tripod column being slightly corroded (sea salt/water), it was difficult to take apart to attach the new head and also my Nikon ED50 scope (which had a new footplate added a long time ago) needed a slight adjustment to make it align to fit into the new plate (long story). Phil and Andrew sorted it all for me, so all good in the end. Traded in the old 128RC head part payment for a spare plate to attach onto the Canon 7D bracket, so I don't have to swop between scope and camera.
Went to Warham Raptor Roost later than intended, to join Eddie and John and a few other birders. In the short time that I was here I saw 2 Male Hen Harriers, 1 Ring tail Hen Harrier, 1 Marsh Harrier and a Merlin which Eddie had spotted sitting on a post way out in the distance – I couldn't see this with my scope at all! Eddie and John had added to this before I got there: 4 Marsh harrier
east, an adult male Peregrine, a Sparrowhawk and a Barn owl. Cruised home and fell asleep on the sofa again.
PHOTOS TO BE ADDED