16 May 2018

16th May 2018 Sensory overload.


Wednesday 16th 60F, 15C, overcast with a light breeze. Walked to the woods via the marsh as the sky slowly cleared to spotty clouds. A solitary Red-necked grebe, with a pale forehead and black eye stripes, kept diving and reappearing on the big marsh pond.

They are supposed to have black foreheads so I can't explain this oddity unless it was something else altogether. Fortunately it seemed quite unmoved by my presence as I stared at it through my binoculars for several minutes carefully memorizing its plumage. Other than that, I could see only a pair of Coots. Not even a single Mallard or Heron today. Back when it was still cold, there were many hundreds of immature mallards on this small lake.

I have mentioned this before but it is amazing how crops, only a couple of feet high, can alter the gently rolling, Danish landscape. Add the summer foliage on the trees and the vistas can change completely. As hedges are cut down and regrow the apparent isolation of protected skyline trees changes with the seasons. The light changes constantly on the shining crops. As clouds throw their shadows and a breeze sends silent waves racing across hill and vale.

I am extremely lucky to have such a range of easily walkable routes in the gorgeous countryside right outside my door. I can usually return with an hour and half after enjoying the woods and fields. It almost make me resent the inevitable walk along the busy road in either direction before I can take any of my safe exits. Even reversing the direction of travel, from clockwise to anticlockwise, alters my appreciation of everything I see.

Almost every tree and bush seems to house a songbird at this time of year. With a cuckoo softly filling in the background. It is fortunate that my increasing deafness has not yet robbed me of being able to hear the birds.

Though I grow steadily more afraid of not hearing cars taking the completely blind corners [badly] at high speed. So many of them clip the apex that I have no chance to jump up the bank or dive into impenetrable weeds.I have taken to walking a yard from the verge to give then and myself a chance to escape. Some corners have sloping concrete blocks to protect the edge from tyre erosion. Seeing hundreds of black tyre marks a foot or more above the asphalt doesn't exactly fill me with confidence!

Danish police caught 15,000 drivers speeding IN ONLY ONE WEEK. That is 6,000 more than one month earlier, again, in only one week.

Police officers, on duty, in unmarked cars, may not speed either. An officer, on duty, was fined £100 equivalent for driving at 56kph in a 50kph [30mph] limit. He claimed that he was confirming a driver, whom he was following in his unmarked police car, was not wearing a seat belt.

The police officers federation is now banning any officer from speeding in the course of their duty in unmarked cars. This in protest at the impossibility of doing their work without the risk of being fined for doing so. The court argued that the police officer should have engaged his siren and blue flashing lights before increasing his speed above the local speed limit. At least, this is my understanding from scanning the story in Danish.

Click on any image for an enlargement.


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