27 Jun 2016

27th June 2016 The vultures have landed.


Monday 27th 61F, 16C, breezy and cloudy with bright sunshine. In an unprecedented arrival, the Danes are shocked by a large flock of 34 meat eating vultures landing in the north. Only a few single birds have ever been seen since 1858. I would have thought that London was a far more fitting site for such visitors but it seems Denmark was chosen instead. It may simply have been a GPS error from all those whirling windmills. While cynics might have suggested that norther Denmark presently lacks dead bodies in the streets so they were definitely lost. Though it is possible they were looking for corpses from the gangland tit-for-tat killings? 

The birds may just have been eying the feeding potential of a whole continent in crisis. No doubt the posh Danish restaurants will already have paid volunteers to bring back an example from the flock. To add to their tasteless, shark's fin and endangered mushroom soup. Or perhaps, the birds had heard the rumours of the catastrophic death toll in the Danish pig sheds. It seems the birds with a 9' wingspan have yet to be informed of the giant plastic 'woodlice' parked outside most pig farms. Where the adult pig carcasses are routinely laid for out collection by the meat rendering lorries. It seems the vultures will soon have had their Danish bacon. [With added sugar.] So they will soon return to gorge themselves on the packed tourist beaches of Spain.

Meanwhile I have had to make do with a small, almost black bird of prey being mobbed by tiny birds over the front fields. Did I mention that there seems to be an acute shortage of Magpies this year? I have hardly seen any at all! Just a walk down to the village facing the traffic. With the wind roaring in my ears on my return. Half a dozen House Martins were clinging to the tiles of the church roof and being fed at frequent intervals by adults on the wing. It was fun to watch the young being buffeted by the wind. They seemed to be perfectly synchronized and would all flap their wings briefly in unison. Some of them had a beautiful sheen on their plumage when they caught the sun.

Showers on and off all day. Rest day.

Tuesday 28th 63F, 17C, bright but cloudy. Only odd showers forecast for today with rather light winds. Despite some grey moments it stayed dry. No walk but a short, hilly ride for 10 miles.

Wednesday 29th 57-65F, 14-18C, heavy overcast, raining and rather windy. The rain is expected to clear to sunshine and showers later. It brightened up in the afternoon so I went off into the wind. The plush fields were full to the brim with grain crops in all their variety. There were several flooded roads where this morning's rain had not found a safe exit. Coming back with a tailwind via the tiny, hilly lanes was as close to perfection as cycling can get. In warm, bright sunshine, with fluffy clouds decorating the blue sky I wallowed in the beauty of the countryside. With no traffic to speak of and the wind providing a free motor I arrived home happy and relaxed. 18 miles for only 3001km so far this year. What a slacker! 

Thursday 30th 57F, 14C, overcast, windy and cool. It is supposed to rain for the next 36 hours. June was not remotely the warm May which went down in the record books. Except for record rainfall in Horsens it was a bit of  damp squib. It is odd how little rain usually features in my cycling exploits. I have even been carrying the sweaty but lightweight 'supermarket' rain jacket in the bag. If only the designer had added arm pit vents it could have been far more comfortable. Every time I thought there was a brighter widow to go out it tipped down again.


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