Monday, May 15, 2017

Aye Eye!

Well hello blog! Been a bit busy with lots of things going on at the moment.

Thanks for the good wishes about my eye operation which went fine - follow-up appointment next week to check its done the trick in lowering the pressure on my optic nerves. The procedure itself wasn't painful, just an odd and very hard to describe sensation. The worst part was the 8 different types of drops that had to go into my eyes beforehand.

We had a surreal experience on the day we went to the hozzie. We had to leave home early as Mike's appointment was earlier than mine and that was a blessing (you'll understand why later). So we arrived with enough time for a leisurely coffee before Mike headed into his area and I toddled off to mine to find a small group of people sitting around grumbling about not knowing what was going on and having been waiting for a couple of hours already without being seen.

That did not bode well. I took out my knitting but couldn't concentrate as I was feeling anxious so I put it away again and just watched the proceedings. It was then that I realised that this normally bustling department was like a ghost town with no nurses or Consultants in sight. After about 30 minutes a nurse appeared and 2 of my fellow patients pounced on her and complained that they hadn't been seen.

I prepared myself for a long wait.

Finally those who'd been waiting when I arrived started to be taken away but as I hadn't even been registered I became anxious so caught a passing nurse who checked their list and my name wasn't on it. Uh oh! She went off to check the afternoon list and that's when we discovered that 3 nurses and 2 Consultants hadn't arrived for work and so they had been phoning round to cancel all appointments  A lovely and very harassed nurse came to apologies and explain that she had tried to phone me but because we'd left home at about 8am they hadn't caught us. Although we still had a bit of a wait this worked in my favour as I was fortunate enough to get my laser treatment done that day. Result!

I've not been online much this last week as I've been getting used to my new glasses which is always rather tricky due to the nature and strength of my rather complicated prescription. My eye test was nearly 8 weeks ago but twice the lenses were sent but had to be returned because they weren't correct (once the varifocal lenses were misaligned and the next time the coating failed). Thankfully my Optician is brilliant and so eventually it was sorted out.


Noo glasses!

I was thinking back to what my lenses were like 30 years ago before the lightweight, slimline lenses were introduced - my lenses were so thick that my eyelashes used to brush against them and I spent all my time cleaning the lenses to get rid of streaks! I've been wearing varifocals for about 25 years now and, thanks to the advances in optics, my complicated prescription allows me to have lovely thin lenses.

When I look back at all the photos I've taken this last week I find it hard to know where to start so I'll just dive in with some birdie action:


The lost cause


I really do despair with this duck. She just drops her eggs wherever she's standing at the time with no pretense at making a nest.


Mr Duck keeps watch whilst she has a nap!


Yep, that's nice and safe - NOT!


Here we go (Magpie)


Yum, brekkie!


My turn! (Jackdaw, aka Hooded Crow)





I'll pop back for more later.....


Uh oh! Who did that?


Meeeeeeeeeee!


YUM

Nature doesn't waste anything.


On a happier note


Whilst Mike was working on the pond I noticed a couple of Blue Tits going in and out of this tree and
suspected they were building a nest in the hollow:









A few days later I spent ages hanging around trying to capture them flitting back and forth with food for their offspring:
















Gosh they work hard. I took the photos in the morning and they were still at it at 8pm.


In the Garden 


I can hardly keep on top of the weeds now. We've had so little rain that the ground is hard as rock and it's impossible to dig so I haven't managed to split up any clumps which need dividing so that will have to wait until autumn.

There's plenty of colour around now and it's a joy to watch the blossom appear:


Apple blossom


Bright orange poppies against the deep purple/blue of the Aquilegias and shocking pink Rhododendron


The striking burnt orange blooms of this deciduous Azalea have the most glorious scent too.

Tilly's been helping me so needed a well-earned nap after nibbling the Catnip


Indoors one of my cacti is putting on a beautiful display



One of many beautiful Aquilegias


The vibrant flowers of Berberis Darwinii. This is one of my desert island shrubs as it provides such an uplifting display to brighten the day in early Spring and is a useful food source for bees.



Pretty pink Deutzia Mont Rose set against the dark leaves of Acer palmatum 'Bloodgood' (the blue polythene is an area I'm clearing and will be planted in the autumn.



Close-up of the Deutzia flowers


More bright pink from this massive rhododendron flowerhead






Flowerhead from above


Buds before the flowers burst open. I was delighted that this looked so good this year as I thought we'd lost it to a virus a few years ago so I chopped it right back to clean wood in the hope it would survive and so far it's doing really well.


I spotted this little bunny in one of the herb beds but was saddened to see that it's suffering from myxomatosis


Poor little mite


Finally, here's a beautiful Ermine Moth we found resting in the grass when we went to feed the horses one evening. I'd never seen one before and it was truly beautiful:



Ermine moth


Why's she lying on the grass now then?


To get a close-up from the side Mr and Mrs Duck!


Next up, another marathon which was rather different from those I've done before! 

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