It’s Midsummer, June 21st, the Oak King is at his Zenith

It’s the longest day and the shortest night today. Something I’ve noticed from busting lots of consumerist junk from life is that I become more aware of the changing wheel of the year. Now is the time when the Oak King has vanquished the Holly King and reigns supreme, but in his ascendance lie the seeds of his own decline, just as for the Holly King the darkest time comes before the dawn.

A lovely day, blue sky and fluffy clouds and just the right temperature for the bike ride to work. My cycle journey wends through the outskirts of the town, runs by the side of farmland and onto heathland before returning to the town. All around birdlife is in full song, from the sparrows making out on the rooftops to the lovely sound of the blackbirds duelling it out across the streets. I took time to appreciate the birds that sang to grace my ride:

  1. blackbird
  2. house sparrow
  3. chiffchaff
  4. wren
  5. wood pigeon
  6. goldfinch
  7. magpie
  8. greenfinch
  9. chaffinch
  10. starling

I missed the yellowhammer that is on the farmland, he’s quiet today. It is a good midsummer, too good a day to be spent in the office but good nevertheless.

Midsummer Poppies

Oak Tree with Midsummer Poppies

Great birdsong skillz, as they’d say in Napoleon Dynamite. I had a flexidisc on a magazine when I was a kid, but I was never patient enough to really *listen* outside.

Perhaps I’ll take a a week off and learn how one day. For you it must be as easy as seeing the birds.

It’s enjoyable, I had an ex who was into birds and the only way I could keep up was to recognise their song, she was more visually oriented. It’s safer to listen when cycling too ;)

This guide from the Beeb is a nice intro.

[…] And I do celebrate the odd birthday going out for a meal with DGF and we spend a bit too much on wine. I don’t have cable, or Sky, or a mobile phone, or an iPod. I don’t need these – because I don’t watch much TV, work supplies me with a perfectly serviceable mobile and if I want to listen to music I want to hear it properly on my hi-fi, and if I’m on my bike I want to be able to hear the cars about to overtake me, not to mention the birds singing. […]

 

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