I was just reading that the German and Danish governments are actually discussing means to limit the annual mass migration of Danes to German supermarkets to buy cheap[er] booze and the ever-popular, sugar, gas and water, [tooth] soft[ening] drinks. The German's have resisted past Danish overtures to reduce the cross border
As I emerged from the woods into a cold wind a large, snow-white bird of prey rose from a hedge. It opened its wings, made a few turns and had gained hundreds of feet in no time at all. After that it seemed content to circle gently as it followed me home with two large eyes on its wing undersides staring down at me. I had imagined it was something slightly more exotic than a white form of the common Buzzard but it seems not. Plover's and Shelduck were flying around or settling on a vast prairie of finely raked, dry soil. I love the plaintiff call of the Plover and enjoy watching their amazingly acrobatic flight. What the Shelducks get from a vast, undulating plain of bare soil is beyond me. They stand out like a sore thumb from miles away! Perhaps they have no enemies? Or, at least none that can sneak up on them without cover.
I left after morning coffee with instructions to find something unlikely and returned empty-handed at 4pm. The wind hardly bothered me all day. Towards the end of the outward leg the sky ahead was simulating Quink's blue-black ink. There were a few threatening rumbles and a few spots of rain but I managed to retreat from out-under unscathed. It wouldn't last. As I packed away the essentials in my saddlebag outside the last supermarket it hailed. Then went off again. I set off for home only for it to hail some more. It was stinging my eyes like a sandstorm! Then it turned to rain and tipped down until I reached within a mile of home. The wind was sideways-on and the roads were awash. Every vehicle added its own plume of spray to my own.
Wild cowslips defending the entrance to the woods.
Then, within sight of home, it promptly stopped raining and the sun came out bright and warm. Too late! I was thoroughly soaked over anything not actively covered by my cheapo, supermarket-purchased, X-Rage, cycling rain jacket. My bare legs were bright red from my ankles to my other bits. My hands were cold and wet from wearing the GripGrab 'Masochist [WC] Blotting Paper MkI' gloves. The WC might suggest I wanted to flush them away somewhere but really stands for "Wind Chill" in capitals. As soon as I was indoors I jumped straight into the shower to warm my extremities up again. Though "jumping" is probably a bit of an overstatement even for me.
So, that was April finished with. Some bright spark obviously thought it would be fun to concentrate all of April's showers into one final deluge. But, thankfully, I'm not paranoid. My GPS plotted route looked like several tattered paper kites on a string lying out on wet grass after a storm. Which seemed highly appropriate. Only 34 miles today.