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Saturday, 8 April 2017

Holme Birding!

The day commenced with taking mother's cat to the vets in Hunstanton. The cartoon above is a typical (although a little exaggerated!) scenerio, that many cat owners have when attempting to get their cat into the carrier! I love this cartoon, always makes me smile!

I find that the element of surprise generally works! The cat was washing its whiskers on the windowsill in the sunshine – I picked up the cat for a cuddle, two seconds later I have placed her slickly into the cat carrier – the cat suddenly realises it was a mean trick and was not getting a cuddle – meowing starts, mother gets stressed and is usual in our family – everything is my fault! Mother gets more stressed, cat meows more and this continues until we got to the vets. The vet confirmed that the cat STILL has fleas, even after the three months of Frontline medication that I have administered. This is probably due to the fact that mother refused to use the recommended spray for cat bedding etc. The vet issued us with more Frontline medication and a can of spray, which mother said she will not be using – looks like it will carry on then! Take cat and mother back home and the cat then gets loads of fuss from mother with 'poor cat', 'what an ordeal'!!! Anyone would have thought the cat had just had an operation!

Lucy and Vivien arrive at the house, both looking lovely and summery in their colourful outfits. We are all fed-up with fish 'n' chips, no one wants to cook and I suggest we go out for a simple jacket potato lunch. Mother refuses to go and I don't understand why, as she doesn't go out when we are at work. No one can decide what we are doing, so I storm out of the house. Tensions are running high today as we need to decide where to scatter father's ashes. I feel very, very emotional today and angry all rolled into one. I drive to Hunstanton to get rolls from Sainsbury's for everyone, but they have sold out. I return to Holme and my sister's and I go to lunch without mother, who angrily refuses. There was an orange tip butterfly by the pond opposite the house.

We head to The Firs at Holme NWT for our lunch. The weather is glorious and I can't believe how hot it is! NWT Warden Gary Hibberd has found a unique way of slowing the traffic down along the road – after the 5-bar gate he has staggered several plastic barriers, left and right along the road, which means people have no choice but to slow down! A bit difficult to explain how these are laid out, but it works! We park our cars and manage to get a table outside for our lovely jacket potato meals.

We followed the path to the beach and the sea looks beautiful through the pines. We then headed east along the path, through the pines and up along the boardwalk to sit at Post 10, which is the seat high on the hill overlooking the scrub, which was part of the original nature trail. The view from here is beautiful overlooking the broadwater, marsh and north of us, the dunes and beach. We sit for a while and reminisce about our childhood days spent on the reserve. We then went to the observatory to give Sophie a late donation cheque in memory of father. It was boiling hot outside the observatory, so much so, that we had to sit inside to get in the shade – can't remember April ever being like this! A Swallow graces the blue skies above us and an Orange Tip flutters by.

Lucy and Vivien head back to mother's house and I went to the wader pools for a short while. The highlight were 3 Med Gulls and 3 lovely Yellow Wagtails feeding amongst the Konik ponies. I then met up with Lucy and Vivien at Holme churchyard to discuss this, as one of our options for the ashes. But as my family have said, father stated no hymns, no priests at his funeral, so how can we leave him in a churchyard? I don't want to scatter his ashes anywhere, it doesn't seem right somehow, I would like him to have a headstone, but it doesn't look like that will be happening. Vivien then leaves early evening to return to Ely and takes Lucy back to King's Lynn.
I spent the evening at Holme Marsh Reserve NWT. Blackcaps and Cettis Warblers singing, a pair of Gadwall, Mallards, Little Grebes, Marsh Harriers, Robin, Blackbird and Pied Wagtail and that was about it. Headed back to King's Lynn, playing 'The Lark Ascending' (played at father's funeral) on route and feeling very upset. I really miss him – I don't think it has really hit me properly yet.


  1. I'm really surprised that visitors to Holme NWT travel too fast along the access road. I was there yesterday afternoon and felt that, if I drove faster than 10mph, my tyres would be shredded by the excessively large stones used to resurface the roadway. As a NWT member, access to the reserve hardly encourages people to visit. Or is that the idea?

    1. I find that the most regular abusers of the track are larger vehicles such as 4x4's. The track is far smoother than it used to be! But, I agree it is not as smooth as it could be, but a smoother road would be abused I fear, by speeding cars and this would also impact on the disturbance of wildlife. I find the orange dust covering the car, more annoying than the state of the road, but I am told that if you drive slower than the requested 15mph, the orange dust does not cling to your car!