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  1. Quintus

    Room 101

    Good to see Sainsbury's are joining in. Last time I went there, a family of five was shopping together and only the mother wore a mask. Perhaps Olympic athletes get an exemption, as they were all wearing tracksuits...
  2. Yes, the COO approved the business case and I got myself a secondhand 200-500 and 1.4x converter. Still finding I need to get close however, hence the hide. The COO might be surprised to see the hide appear without approval , so I'm hoping it really is well camouflaged and she never notices it! Here's the new lens in action...
  3. On our last trip to Minsmere before the lockdown (can't travel that far now), we saw nothing much of interest - but then returned to find about thirty redwings in the garden. I've just ordered a pop-up hide so that I can lurk in the garden and get close to some of our regulars. I've just repurposed the Xmas tree with fat-ball decorations and it's getting its first visitors..
  4. Guardian reviews generally draw a few eye-rolls from me, as does this, but she's right about the overall warmth (btw my eyes rolled again at the WSJ review demanding more tension, anxiety and drama). We're really enjoying this series, and admiring the talent, personableness and determination of the young dancers. We just watched the episode where the youngsters come together for the first time in rehearsal with the principals - and it was both amusing and touching to see how the children's wide-eyed adulation of Megan Fairchild made them forget to actually move rather than just gaze at her dan
  5. I've been reading any number of friends' summaries of how awful 2020 has been, all horribly familiar. We must all however also have taken a few positive things out of months of enforced leisure, or learnt something new (see my favourite meme of the year below).. We discovered a host of local wildlife reserves that somehow we'd overlooked, and while we'd always been walkers, learnt how to see more wildlife rather than simply charge round a circuit. I also rediscovered literature after a couple of years' laziness - in the summer I re-read all of Shakespeare's plays and as many Canterbury Tal
  6. Rudolf performs all his anguished pas de deux wearing the ass's head from Midsummer Night's Dream.. Nutcracker soldiers put in a shift in the munitions factory in Dust.. Myrtha raises Giselle from the dead by means of Widow Simone's clog dance..
  7. I saw a nice nuthatch and my first bearded tits on my last visit to Minsmere, but this chap on the adjacent cafe table was getting a bit impatient with my camera shenanigans.
  8. It's still up on Youtube to watch - I forgot too then skimmed through just watching the dancing segments. Osipova was very good, despite the most unflattering costume I've seen in a while.
  9. That's one hench ram John, he thinks he's a lion! I'd been for a river walk a couple of days ago (saw a seal but not much else) and on the way back stopped on a whim at a common I'd often passed. Suddenly two beautiful fallow deer popped out of the scrub and bounced across my path. Managed to grab the shot below, though had the deer been more courteous it would have paused and let me increase my ISO speed. Shortly after, a small dog in a red coat appeared, which explained their flight. Never did see that dog's owner!
  10. We were wandering round Dunwich heath a few days ago and saw a rather parrot-like silhouette atop a fir tree. It turned out to be a crossbill, a bird I've never seen before. Bizarre looking beast, like a chaffinch that's flown face first into a window
  11. I'v been trying to get a decent pic of a long-tailed tit for ages, but they are very mobile little blighters. Finally got this one today; I do think they have very cute faces!
  12. It's part of the unfortunate trend towards identitarian politics, putting people in outdated little boxes of geography, class, education, race, religion etc and trying to generalise their behaviour accordingly to try and align whole blocks of votes. We're all individuals (apart from that Life of Brian character who denied it), and our society is more open, mobile and heterogeneous than ever before. I grew up on a council estate but went to private school, I love art, poetry and ballet but have a karate black belt, I listen to both classical music and punk, grew up in a frankly racist environm
  13. ....but they won't let him join the heavenly choir!
  14. My eldest son just got me RSPB membership as an early Xmas present; found this little chap at Minsmere this morning :)
  15. Here's a perky skylark from yesterday's walk at Dunwich. There was a lot of excited twitcher action by the marshes - one group was watching a greater yellowlegs, and another an eastern yellow wagtail, both of which are apparently quite rare sights. I was hoping the yellowlegs would be more Malvolio-like than it proved, but the wagtail was a pretty little thing. I got grainy pics of both, which will go into my business case for getting a longer lens...
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