Jaqui's Daily Blog

Grey Socks, the Birdy Group, and a Set of Binoculars

Do you ever notice something and wonder: why?


It happened to me yesterday, waiting at the bus stop for the Pulse bus. I was sitting in the bus shelter, nursing a bag of Victoria plums which I had just purchased from the green-grocers at Mr B's express request. They had to be Victorias or They Simply Would Not Do. It was tempting to buy some other species of plum, just to see if he could tell the difference, but I wasn't that brave.


As I was sitting there, two school-girls arrived with their mother. Each was wearing just one long grey sock, with their other leg bare. You are probably surmising that they were sharing a pair between them but the difference in size between the smaller girl and her much bigger sister made this seem unlikely.


So what was with the socks? Was it possibly Wear One Sock To School Day? If so, why and what for and where was the educational benefit? I looked around but there didn't seem to be any other school-children with one bare leg and one sock-clad one. Even I, of the super inquisitive nature, did not feel able to put the question to the one person who could have answered it - the children's mother. I shall have to go the rest of my life wondering.


I spent the morning with the Birdy Group, our first meet of the new "term". As far as I could tell we were each of us wearing a complete pair of socks. We had several new members joining us which was most gratifying for our leader, the Lovely Linda. Even though she had been unable to find the address of one of the newbies whom she had undertaken to collect and transport to our starting place. She had driven up and down his road looking for his place without success until she had to give up or be late.


Possibly he is a bit like the birds we had gathered to watch - you know where they live but, boy, can they be difficult to spot. I would have been in even more difficulty than usual as, when making my last minute preparations for my morning out, I couldn't find my binoculars. Mr B knew exactly where they were. They were where Young Faris had hidden them last time he came to visit. No, he didn't know where that was, don't be silly, that would have completely spoilt his argument which was that I shouldn't allow our youngest grandson to play with my binoculars.


In vain did I protest that he is actually very careful with them. For a Rampaging Rascal that is. I couldn't explain that the main reason I let him play with them is that it makes me laugh, the way he always gazes through the wrong end of the binoculars, with a frown of puzzlement on his face. It cracks me up every time but this is not an argument which is likely to convince Mr B.


Fortunately Brave Pam offered to loan me her husband Ian's binoculars. I felt enormously privileged as I strung them round my neck because Ian died last autumn which means such possessions are doubly precious. I still remember how calmly he looked after me once upon a Birdy Group walk up on Highdown Hill when I came over all unnecessary and had to lie down for a bit on the grassy bank with skylarks arising all around me.


It was such a wonderful morning for a walk. Especially with a bit of bird watching thrown in. The kestrels put on a great show for us, hovering for ages in the skies above us before plunging down to grab some hapless creature (aka dinner) below. Thanks to Ian's superb binoculars, I was able to see the yellowhammer and the whitethroat up close and personal, catch the swifts in flight and watch the pheasants lording it in a far-off field. "Did you know," Ron (husband of Tall Margaret) quizzed me, "that the pheasant is the only bird stupider than the pigeon?" Can that be true, I wonder? I also picked out Butlin's Skyline Pavilion over in Bognor Regis. Yes, indeed, I was looking through the right end.


Tall Margaret and I talked about our twins - hers are two years older than The Twinkles so I always like hearing about her twins' exploits in order to gather a few insights into Twin Behaviour. We only broke off when Tall Margaret almost stepped on a speckled wood butterfly. Just a common butterfly, according to my book of butterflies. How can something so beautiful be "common"?


Brave Pam had been a bit disappointed that she hadn't seen as many birds as she had hoped - so this afternoon, turning up with Mr B for the monthly U3A meeting, I was delighted to hear that on her return home a whole party of goldfinches had paid a visit to her back garden.


You never know, do you, what you might see, or where, or when?


Life's like that.

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Latest comments

03.07 | 22:43

Wouldn't have missed it for the world. xx

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12.06 | 02:31

I love that you talk to your plants ... I used to on my allotment ... seemed perfectly rational !

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05.06 | 22:01

Sounds like a perfect day Jacqui, happy birthday for tomorrow, love Val xx

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07.12 | 15:48

what details have you got on your mysterious Wilde?

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